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New year, new coaches, new teams for STC


November 29, 2017
By Allison Graham - Sports Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

Sports Editors Note: Dustin Peska is a Class of 2000 STC graduate. He is an alternative teacher for the STC Partnership Center. He has been a long time coach for South Tama with middle school and underclassmen programs. This will be his first year at the helm of the STC Boys Basketball program.

Q: Can you talk about your coaching history with South Tama and what your experience has been with the game of basketball?

A: This is my 9th year total coaching basketball for South Tama. For five years I was a Varsity Assistant and Head JV coach. The other four years I coached the 8th grade level. My experience with the game of basketball was a former player here at South Tama and then two years at William Penn University. I then decided that I wanted to jump ships to the coaching side where I could help in the recruiting process, film breakdown, attending clinics and just being around the coaching staff (including former South Tama alumni Brandon Lenhart) on a daily basis.

Article Photos

Keith Keahna sails for a bucket during a conference contest with Benton last season.
File Photo/Allison Graham

Q: You've been a long time coach for the Trojans but never as a head varsity coach. What made you make the jump?

The kids. I enjoy being around all the student athletes and this gave me another opportunity to teach not only the game of basketball, but to teach skills to help make each student athlete better prepared for life.

A: With a new coaching staff in place, are there any changes or new developments that players and fans can look forward to with you at the helm?

I don't think necessarily any big changes. I think with having Coach Yuska around will bring great energy to the program and will give the kids another great individual to learn from. One thing we will do no matter what it is, we will stay together and do the best job that we can do.

Q: How has your first week of practice gone?

A: It's been long. Kids are getting up early every morning and coming in ready to work. They then go to school all day working hard in the classroom and are ready to get after another practice session after school. We have thrown a lot at them quick and they have seemed to respond and take in what we are teaching them. I couldn't have asked for a much better start from our kids as I have not heard one complaint come out of their mouths. Everything has been positive and they understand that we are all in this together.

Q: This year's group of seniors have played a lot of basketball together, at this stage in their development, what sort of things are you working on with them to get better?

A: Just getting them buying into the system and being the best that they can be everyday. Working together as one and having fun along the way. This is not just on the floor but in the classroom as well. I want these guys to be the best in everything they do. If they leave high school and go work at a factory and put knobs on a radio for a living (which I hope doesn't happen), I expect them to be the best at putting those knobs on the radio.

Q: Do you anticipate any JV or freshman players from last year coming up and making an impact early on?

A: As it is early yet, I am evaluating everyday in practice. If I had to start a game today, I would be clueless to whom my starters would be. I tell my kids that the playing time is there if they want it. They have to prove it and earn it. However, lets just say I do like what I see.

Q: How will the team fill the void left by four year starting point guard, Clayton Rosenberger?

A: Losing Clayton will be tough shoes to fill. When you lose a four-year starter and a leader on the court who averaged 13pts a game wont be easy. Not only will we miss Clay but huge minutes from Riley Davenport and Adonis Lasley.

We will have to work hard together to help fill those losses and I know my squad will be up for the challenge. Back to losing the point guard, I have given reps to all my junior/senior guards at the point guard position expecting all of them to be able to bring the ball up and be able to run the offense.

Q: You have some nice size down low with Lane Koch, Shae Betz, Keith Keahna and Justus Ward on the team. Do you anticipate that making an impact for the Trojans?

A: Absolutely. With us having guards that can shoot teams will have to guard the perimeter and wont be able to double down on our bigs. If they do, they wont like the results. Then with our BIGS -kids down low, it gives them more space to go to work and battle. In addition to these 4 bigs, we also have Tim Evans, Jackson Beltz and a transfer in Wyatt Crain who all could possibly help give us minutes at the Varsity level. We will be tough to guard as a whole and will be subbing consistently to stay fresh.

Q: What are you most looking forward to this season?

A: Just being with the kids and building team unity. Teaching them and watching them learn everyday and being successful. All the laughs and memories we will have together will be forever owned and cherished.



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