Oakton High School's former softball coach and the school's athletics director are standing by two different accounts of what led to the coach's departure over the weekend.
Athletics Director Pat Full told Patch on Tuesday the pair had a disagreement last week over the softball team's staffing and it couldn't be reconciled.
Read: Ray Gordon No Longer Oakton High School Softball Coach
Coach Ray Gordon wanted to bring on an assistant the school would not hire, both men said. Full said after the argument, Gordon tended his resignation on Friday.
But Gordon says he never officially resigned.
In the course of last week's argument, Gordon said, he verbally suggested to Full if he didn't like the way the softball program was run he should find another coach.
Gordon said he received a call from Full at 5:19 p.m. Friday, minutes before the Cougars' season opening game, saying the school had found another coach.
"I never quit. I never walked away," Gordon said. "That's the farthest thing from the truth."
Gordon said in the course of the argument he told Full if they couldn't resolve their differences he'd be happy to coach this season while they completed a full search for future years.
"I told him if he chose to go that route, I was going to stay until there was a coach in place, until there was a good relationship for the girls," Gordon said.
Read: Oakton Players: 'You're Not Firing Our Coaches Without A Fight'
Full said the issue wasn't one that could wait until the end of the season. Initially, it wasn't clear how soon they'd be able to find a replacement, but found one within the day.
"We found someone on Friday to start the transition this week," he said.
Full said both of Gordon's assistants also left the team over the weekend.
Gordon called the way the situation was handled was unprofessional.
"The bottom line is we didn't agree, but the biggest crime here is the way it was done," Gordon said. "For the kids it could've been much easier if they did a real search .... "[Full] wanted to make a change and he made a change."
Full said the new coach, Sam Newman, a former Fairfax High School softball coach, started Monday.
Newman, who returns to coaching after some time away to focus on his career and family, met with players Monday. Parents also met with Oakton administrators Monday about the transition.
While the players loved Gordon, one parent wrote to Patch the players "are all in agreement that they will support their new coach regardless of this situation."
Full said the team has one assistant in place, but his office was looking for more this week.
He said they'd be looking to hire assistants already on staff at Oakton, or, any interested community member at-large, though the Fairfax County Public Schools hiring process may take time.
"Spring break is next week, and that gives us some time," Full said.