Advocate staff photo by JOHN OUBRE -- Former Southern Lab coach Nick Mitchell is the new coach at Port Allen.

Southern Lab football coach Nick Mitchell resigned from the school after four seasons.

SLHS sent an email to The Advocate late Monday night about Mitchell’s decision to step down, effective immediately. Mitchell confirmed his departure from the school less than three months after leading the Kittens to a Division IV select state runner-up finish.

“Southern Lab has been very good to me over the past four years as we built the program,” Mitchell said. “I’ll always be grateful for that and for the players and their families.

“There were some philosophical differences, and I just felt if was best for me to step down.”

Mitchell compiled a 31-21 record at SLHS. The Kittens were 8-6 last fall, overcoming injuries and a 1-5 start to win seven straight games en route to a District 6-1A title and the runner-up finish in Division IV.

SLHS lost 52-6 to Ouachita Christian in the Division IV title game. The Kittens were a Division IV semifinalist in 2013.

“Nick was a class act and was definitely needed at the time he was hired,” Southern Lab Principal Ronnie Harrison said in an email. “He did something that was not accomplished in over 16 years as he led us to the state finals.

“He is an offensive wiz, a dedicated family man and I have the utmost respect for him and his decision to move to a new challenge. I truly wish him and his family the very best.”

Mitchell, a former Destrehan High and Southern University baseball player, was an assistant coach at East Ascension when he was hired by SLHS. Mitchell said he is not sure what his next move will be.

“I’m going to explore my options,” Mitchell said. “I may be an assistant coach.”