Alice High School is closer to hiring a new baseball coach, but it likely won’t happen for at least a few more weeks.

Athletic director Kyle Atwood said the delay is meant to allow coaches who may still be in the state playoffs and interested in the job some extra time to apply for the position.

“The baseball playoffs are just starting and the majority of coaches will not look into a new job until they are done playing, so we don’t want to miss out by deciding to hire someone too soon,” he said.

Alice began its search in April and already has a list of applicants. Atwood said his plan is to begin reviewing applications and conduct some interviews.

“Obviously, this is a really good baseball job in Alice,” Atwood said. “We have a great program, great facilities and a lot of support. We have a young team and a talented group of middle school kids, some good players, coming up. It’s a great opportunity.”

The new coach will replace former coach Rene Chavez, who is leaving Alice High School after two seasons with the Coyotes.

Chavez resigned from the school district this spring.

Chavez was hired in Alice by former athletic director Justen Evans. He came to Alice from Corpus Christi King where he worked as an assistant on the Mustangs baseball team. Chavez inherited a baseball program which was 5-14 in 2016.

The Coyotes were 13-14 this season and 2-8 in 30-5A’s North Zone. The Coyotes lost their end-of-the-season crossover game against the South Zone’s Corpus Christi Moody, 3-1. Alice was 13-13 in Chavez’s first season here in 2017.

“During the time I was here we put together in the fall an offseason program that focused on player development,” Chavez said. “We played winter ball when football season was over. We hosted a junior varsity and varsity tournament in the spring. We competed and gained respect from our opponents while having some signature wins which created a buzz about baseball that wasn’t there when I arrived. We played summer ball for the kids who weren’t playing to play-select ball. Alice was in the beginning stages of playing year around baseball.”

Chavez said he has several coaching opportunities before him including a possible job as an assistant at Laredo Community College under former Tuloso-Midway head coach Michael Davila and Chavez’s brother and former Coastal Bend College head coach Michael Chavez.

“My goal when I got here was to gain the experience in running a first-class baseball program and to leave this place better than when I found it, and I was able to do both,” Chavez said. “I am sad that I didn’t get to see it through. I will miss the players the most.”

The new coach hired will be the baseball program’s fourth coach in five seasons.