A-K Valley sports notebook: Springdale hopes to hire boys basketball coach soon

July 5, 2018
A-K Valley sports notebook: Springdale hopes to hire boys basketball coach soon

Seth Thompson led the Springdale boys basketball team for six seasons before stepping down in May.

Springdale competed in a boys basketball summer league, just as many teams do over the offseason months. The Dynamos were lacking at one particular position — a coach — but that could change soon.

Interviews will begin next week to find a replacement for Seth Thompson, who resigned in May after six seasons as coach. Athletic director Ray Davis said the hope is to have a new coach named at the district’s regular board meeting in August.

With no coach on hand, Springdale still could compete in off-campus events like summer leagues, as the junior varsity and varsity teams did. However, they couldn’t hold any on-campus open gyms without a permanent coach.

“We’ve had different people stepping up to do things,” Davis said.

Davis said 14 candidates applied for the coaching vacancy, with 12 confirmed for interviews.

“The pool of applicants is pretty good,” he said.

Springdale qualified for the WPIAL Class A playoffs last season, beating California in the first round for the program’s first postseason victory since 2008. The Dynamos also qualified for the PIAA playoffs.

Great ball of China

Terence Parham is taking another summer trip to China.

The Deer Lakes boys basketball coach left over the weekend to go to China for a second consecutive year of training and instruction work.

Last summer Parham worked with the Women’s Chinese Basketball Association developmental program and helped at the Xinjiang Flying Tigers basketball camp. The Flying Tigers won the Chinese Basketball Association championship in 2017.

Parham, entering his fourth season at Deer Lakes, led the Lancers to their second consecutive WPIAL Class 4A playoff appearance in 2017. The former Shady Side Academy coach, a former multi-sport star at that school and Bucknell, also owns Triple Threat Training, a sports training company that operates out of Deer Lakes High School, Shady Side Academy and Clique Athletics in Edgewood.

The spoils of Victor

Nick Ionadi loves his new job. And that is just partly because he gets to enjoy the Florida sunshine.

Ionadi, the former Penn Hills standout guard and former girls varsity coach at Kiski Area, is working as a basketball skills trainer in Miami with I’m Possible Training, along with Micah Lancaster and Bryce Stanhope.

He spent time last week helping to work out Victor Oladipo of the Indiana Pacers. The All-Star guard and former Indiana Hoosier averaged 23.1 points last season and was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player.

“He’s like a big kid, but he works his tail off,” said Ionadi, who will be an assistant boys coach at Penn-Trafford next season.

Oladipo, who also played for the Orlando Magic and Oklahoma City Thunder, is a former Sporting News Men’s College Basketball Player of the Year.

Ionadi is finding his place in his new surroundings but appears to be adjusting quickly.

“I’ve gotten to know Micah pretty well the last few years. He’s helped me a ton, taught me quite a bit,” Ionadi said. “He’s a great guy, a phenomenal trainer. The attention to detail is what sets him apart in addition to how we do things. I’ve gotten to really learn how to efficiently train players, chase their weaknesses. It’s fun.

“As for Vic, the guy works insanely hard. It’s hard to describe. It’s something you’d need to see first hand.”

One giant leap

Alex Kirilloff is climbing the ranks in the minor leagues, and he’s climbing the minor league rankings, as well.

The former Plum star, recently promoted to High-A Fort Myers in the Minnesota Twins’ organization, jumped 50 spots to No. 38 in Baseball America’s midseason update of its top 100 prospects list.

Kirilloff, the Twins’ 2016 first-round draft pick, wasn’t listed in Baseball America’s preseason top 100 after missing the 2017 season because of elbow surgery, but he debuted at No. 88 in the publication’s first update of the season. Through Monday, the 20-year-old outfielder was hitting .367 with one double, one home run and 12 RBIs with Fort Myers after posting a .333 average, 13 homers and 56 RBIs at Low-A Cedar Rapids before his promotion.

Senior moment

Bob Ford, the longtime club professional at Oakmont Country Club, was part of one of the most-followed groups at last week’s U.S. Senior Open at Broadmoor East Course in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Ford, a Lawrenceville native, was paired for the opening rounds with John Smoltz, the legendary Atlanta Braves pitcher and Baseball Hall of Famer. Jim McGovern completed the group.

Ultimately, none of the three made the cut. Ford shot 18-over par in the opening two rounds, as did McGovern, and Smoltz carded a 22-over.

Oakmont native Sean Knapp also competed, missing the cut after shooting 11-over.

Knapp was playing in the 118th Western Pennsylvania Golf Association’s Amateur Championship at Fox Chapel Country Club, but the tournament was postponed after one round because of heavy rains and flooding. Knapp was a shot back of the lead at 3-under.

Bill Beckner Jr. contributed. Doug Gulasy is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at dgulasy@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

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