AP NEWS

Macciocco Excited To Help Build New Program

March 29, 2019

The pace of the game. The higher level of competition. Those were just two of the things that interested Ross Macciocco about potentially being the head coach of the Wilkes-Barre Area girls basketball team.

And the chance to be the part of something new? Well, that was the biggest part of the whole deal.

On Wednesday night, the Wilkes-Barre school board appointed Macciocco as the first girls basketball coach at Wilkes-Barre Area, a combination of girls from Meyers, Coughlin and GAR.

Macciocco has 34 years of coaching experience with stops at Dunmore and Scranton Prep. He has won 660 games as well as 14 Lackawanna League championships and seven District 2 titles. He most recently coached at Marywood University working as an assistant for the men’s and women’s teams. Last year he was the associate head coach for the boys team at Stroudsburg High School.

“Obviously the records (of Meyers, GAR and Coughlin) don’t stand out, but I look at the youth,” Macciocco. “I coached at Dunmore and Scranton Prep. Scranton Prep was bigger than Dunmore class-wise. The game is a little faster than at the A and 2A schools. That intrigued me. I looked at the rosters and I am excited about some of the kids that are going to be coming back. I saw the youth of the program. We have to see how we can build on that.”

The team that will be known as the Wolfpack will begin to be acquainted with one another in the coming weeks. They will be spending as much time as possible with their new coach in the gym over the summer. By the time December rolls around, they will take the floor in what Macciocco said is an opportunity to be part of history.

“To be able to start from the beginning, this is a new era. We are building the foundation of a new program,” Macciocco said Thursday afternoon. “I enjoyed the ride with this, the way they handled everything with the interview process. I’m just happy to be the coach.”

Macciocco said he is permitted to bring one assistant coach with him and that will be Fred Lewis, who was his assistant at Dunmore and Scranton Prep. At Wedneday’s board meeting when all the winter coaches were hired for the 2019-2020 sports season, Mary Mushock was named the associate head coach.

Macciocco said he is in the process of setting up meetings with not only the basketball players, but the administrators in all three high school buildings. Once those initial meetings take place, it will then be time to get to work and build the foundation for the upcoming season.

“I’m going to sell the kids that this will be a bigger and better thing,” Macciocco said. “Instead of it being GAR, Meyers or Coughlin’s community, this is a team that will represent the whole area. We are going to be starting new. We want to put a mark on the program in its first year of existence, and this team will go down in history as being a part of it.”

Contact the writer:

sbennett@citizensvoice.com; 570 821-2062;

@CVSteveBennett on Twitter