The 2019-2020 school year will be a landmark year for Abington Friends School (AFS) as a state-of-the-art athletic center opens its doors in September. The school has added three new coaches to the athletics department who will be teaching and training in the Richard N. Berman Athletics Center (Grand Opening on Friday, September 6, 2019). Jon Wessel, an AFS alumnus from the class of 2003, has been selected to lead the school’s Varsity Boys Basketball program as its next head coach; Rob Hewitt has been named the Director of Running Programs; and Jess Breuning will serve as head coach of the Varsity Girls Soccer team.
Director of Athletics Jeff Bond says, “We are thrilled to add Jon Wessel and Rob Hewitt to our coaching staff and to expand Jess Bruening’s role here at Abington Friends School. All three of these leaders bring strong records and tremendous skill and passion to their positions. I can’t wait to see how they will continue to strengthen and evolve their programs as we move into this exciting new era at AFS.”
After an extensive search process, Jon Wessel was selected as Head Coach of Varsity Boys Basketball. Wessel will also teach middle school health and physical education and serve as a student advisor at the School. Wessel succeeds AFS Boys Basketball coaching legend Steve Chadwin. Chadwin wrapped up his 40-year career at the helm of the Kangaroos in February, retiring with an overall record of 649-305 (.680 winning percentage) and 16 Friends Schools League championships.
A member of the AFS 2003 Friends Schools League championship boys basketball and baseball teams, Wessel continued his basketball career at Goucher. He began his coaching career at AFS in 2008, working as a Varsity Boys Basketball assistant, later adding Junior Varsity head coaching responsibilities. He played a key role in individual skills development on AFS’s 2013 FSL championship team, which included 10 future collegiate basketball players. Wessel has also served as an assistant coach at Delaware Valley University, Millersville University and Radnor High School. He earned a Masters in Social Work from Temple University in 2014 and recently completed his certification in K-12 Health and Physical Education from Eastern University.
“Being named the Varsity Boys Basketball coach at AFS is an absolute honor,” notes Wessel. “To be able to take over a program that Coach Chadwin built into one of the most respected basketball programs in the region, is a dream come true.”
Rob Hewitt joins Abington Friends School as Director of Running Programs, where he will serve as the head coach for the Kangaroos’ Varsity Cross-Country, Indoor Track and Track and Field teams and lead the development of all of AFS’s current and future cross-country and track athletes. Hewitt will also teach upper school physical education and health and middle school science at AFS.
A 2003 graduate of St. Joseph’s University, where he lettered in Men’s Cross-Country and Track & Field, Hewitt began his coaching career at Germantown Friends School in 2004. In his 13 years at the helm of GFS’s running programs, Hewitt led the Tigers to 17 Friends Schools League Cross-Country championships, including 12 Boys’ Cross-Country titles in a row, and 15 FSL Track & Field championships and was named PAISAA Coach of the Year five times.
Jess Breuning has been named Head Coach of the Abington Friend School’s Varsity Girls Soccer team. Breuning also serves as AFS’s Varsity Girls Lacrosse head coach, completing her first season at the helm of the Kangaroos this spring. The team saw a marked improvement in Breuning’s first season as head coach, finishing 9-7 overall, the program’s most wins in a season since 2010.
A 2017 graduate of Cabrini University, Breuning was a four-year starter on defense for the Cavaliers’ Women’s Soccer and Women’s Lacrosse teams, where she earned Colonial States Athletic Conference (CSAC) All-League recognition three times for soccer and four times for lacrosse, including CSAC Women’s Lacrosse Defender of the Year in 2016. Captain of Cabrini’s Women’s Soccer team in 2015 and 2016, Breuning helped to lead the Cavaliers into the CSAC postseason all four years of her career, including three league titles and two NCAA Division 3 tournament berths.
Founded in 1697, Abington Friends School (AFS) is one of the oldest schools in the nation and provides an enriching community for children age 3 through grade 12. AFS’s strong academic program, combined with its deep and resonant Quaker identity and spirit of collaboration results in students who go on to lead lives of significance. www.abingtonfriends.net