BREAKING NEWS: Kyle Lowman leaving Bandys, will be head coach at St. Stephens

He’s third person from his football-focused

family to guide a Catawba County program


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A look at head football coaches at St. Stephens, where Kyle Lowman will become the 13th person to hold that position since 1972:
     Head coach               First yr.  Total years
Ed Tallman                   1972                  6
George Nazaravich      1978                  1
Marty Curtis                  1979                 4
Roland Scott                  1983                4
Dick Foster                     1987                9
Gary Moore                     1996               2
Frank Snider                   1998               2
John Jarman                   2000              3
Doug Justice                    2003              5
Fred Whalen                    2008             4
Chris Bunting                  2012               1
Wayne Hicks                    2013              8
Notes: St. Stephens’ unofficial varsity football record since 1959 is 260-373-14 with a share of a conference title in 1960, a conference title in 1961 and 10 state playoff appearances … The Indians have two postseason wins – 1991 first round vs. W. Henderson and 2015 first round at Canton Pisgah.
SOURCE: research and files


HICKORY – Kyle Lowman, the new head coach at St. Stephens High, considers himself the most “nerdy” of his football-coaching family.

Lowman, 40, is the son of former Bandys head football coach Randy Lowman and the older brother of Trent Lowman, who succeeded his dad at Bandys and is now head coach at East Surry.

“I am more natured like dad as far as demeanor,” said Lowman, whose teaching contract (math) at St. Stephens was approved on Monday night by the Catawba County Schools’ Board of Education. “Trent’s a little more intense than me.

“I rely most on my instincts. I am more of a teacher … that’s how I approach situations, make them teachable situations.

“Of the three of us, I am the most nerdy… from meetings to podcasts, watching video. I ‘nerd out’ off most everything more so than they did.”

Kyle Lowman has been hired to replace Wayne Hicks, who retired after eight seasons at St. Stephens with a record of 30-56 and one state playoff team (2015).

“I have always looked at St. Stephens as a place that intrigued me,” Kyle Lowman said. “I know some folks there and have lots of respect for (athletic director) Billy Baker.

“They’ve had continuity on their coaching staff and Coach Hicks did a really good job, they always played and prepared professionally.”

The high school football teams Kyle Lowman, new head coach at St. Stephens, worked with at Bandys:
Year                 Record
2000                  6-5
2001                  6-5
2002                 14-2*
2003                 13-3*
2004                 11-4*
2005                 10-4*
2006                8-5*
2007                6-6*
2008                7-7*
2009                11-2*
2010                 3-8
2011                10-4*
2012               9-5*
2013               5-7*
2014              8-4*
2015              2-9
2016              3-8
2017              5-7*
2018              12-2*
2019              5-7*
TOTALS     154-104
*–state playoff team
Notes: Lowman was an assistant coach on two conference title teams, two teams that shared a league title, 15 state playoff teams and two West 2A championship teams… He started on Bandys’ 1996 West 2A title team that lost to Clinton in the state finals (went 14-2) and the Trojans’ 1997 team (14-1) that lost to Shelby in the West 2A final.
SOURCE: research and files

The Indians — 2-5 last spring — open the season Aug. 20 at Bandys, where Lowman played wide receiver for his dad in 1996 and 1997. He also played point guard in basketball for the Trojans (two years) and multiple positions in baseball (three years).

A Bandys (1998) and Lenoir-Rhyne University (2002) graduate, Kyle Lowman began teaching and coaching at Bandys in 2000 while he was still in college.

He was hired at Bandys in August 2002 and spent 2000-2012 coaching for his dad, 2013-17 with Trent Lowman and 2018 and 2019 with former head coach Tom Eanes.

Kyle Lowman was the Trojans’ offensive coordinator for 12 years (2005-2014, 2016, 2017). He did not coach last season, as he and his wife welcomed a third daughter just 10 months ago.

He had passed up multiple opportunities through the years to become a head coach.

In his first job as the big boss, Kyle Lowman said his focus will be on best using what he learned at Bandys about building a program. St. Stephens will not, by design or otherwise, be Bandys-lite.

“I think the thing I guess I am most used to is high expectations,” Kyle Lowman said. “On focusing on getting the kids to give their best in everything they do.

“I want us to compete and compete hard … for them to be there for their teammates, pick each other up and get better.”

Kyle Lowman said one of the things he’s most enjoyed about being from a football family was the time he spent with his dad, younger brother and fellow Bandys coaches.

“I’m a real family guy,” he said. “Our family and faith are at the forefront and they (everyone) know that about me.

“Trent and I (still) talk almost every day. He encouraged me in my decision. He believes in me.”

Asked what his dad first said to him when he accepted the position about three weeks ago when St. Stephens principal Kyle Stocks made the offer, Lowman said: “Congratulations and he thinks it’s cool.”

Kyle Lowman has at least 11 more years before he will be eligible to retire from the public schools, and says he can easily see himself going to work on Springs Road until another chapter in life opens.

“I could see that, yes,” he said.


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