Women’s basketball gets a new coach

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Women’s basketball gets a new coach

Photo by Rachel Vogt

Photo by Rachel Vogt

Photo by Rachel Vogt

William Barnard, Staff Writer

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It is more than fair to say that new Wayne State women’s basketball coach has experience coaching. Brent Pollari brings 15 years of coaching experience at the division I, II, & III levels. He was named the 11th head coach in the 48-year history of Wildcat women’s basketball on June 14.

Pollari replaces Chris Kielsmeier, who stepped down in April to coach at Cleveland State. He also has four years of high school experience under his belt.

“As a team we’re really excited about the future of the program, I’m really excited about the changes he is going to make and how they are already impacting the program as a whole in a positive way.” junior point guard Evelyn Knox said.

Coach Pollari looks to come in and get to know the returning players and new players right away. He spent his last three years coaching at St. Mary’s University in Minnesota.

Pollari left there with an overall record of 50-29. In his 2015-2016 year as head coach there, he received MIAC coach of the year as he led his team to a 21-6 record.

“The biggest change he has made is with our defense, instead of being a primary 2-3 matchup zone team we are changing it up and playing man-to-man and also some full court presses to give teams a different look,” Knox said.

In Pollari’s one year as an assistant coach at Minnesota State, he helped the team reach the 2014-2015 Division II tournament. Pollari was also an associate head coach at Northern State for six years where he was the recruiting coordinator.

When Pollari was there, he helped the Wolves reach the 2011 Division II tournament.

He spent one year as an assistant at Division I North Dakota (2013-14), helping the school win the Big Sky Conference title and a trip to the NCAA Tournament. Brent Pollari attended The University of Mary, where he graduated in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in physical education teaching and a minor in history.

“The six years I spent at Northern State had a huge influence on my career,” Pollari said.

Pollari went to Northern State as a graduate assistant and got his masters in physical education, health, and coaching in 2006.

Pollari can not wait to contribute to the Wayne State women’s basketball program.

“I am honored to be a part of a program with such success and tradition,” Pollari said. “The team has a positive culture of class, attitude, and effort.”

He is humbled by the sustained success at Wayne State and the community support. In all of Pollari’s experience that he brings to the table he has faced Wayne State many times.

“I have over nine years of experience in the NSIC and have always admired how Wayne State plays and the culture of the program,” Pollari said.

Pollari continued to talk about how excited he his to be coaching at Wayne State College. He worked his way up to his newest position as head coach at Wayne State. Pollari started coaching middle school girls basketball and now is a Division II women’s basketball head coach.

“I have worked my way to get to where I am now by using a teaching mentality when I coach,” Pollari said.

Pollari talked about the team and how they are doing well and getting after it right now. He wants them to be the best that they can be as a team.

“The team has been working hard in the weight room and conditioning hard on the track,” Pollari said. “We are getting after it now to be ready for the season.”

Wayne State is coming off of a successful season and look to build on it this year. WSC is an NCAA Division II school located in Wayne, Nebraska and competes in the 16-team Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference. The Wildcats were 25-7 in the 2017-18 season and placed second in the NSIC South Division with an 18-4 league mark.

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