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Mielke to lead WDC boys’ basketball team

Wadena-Deer Creek High School has announced the hiring of Jason Mielke to coach the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverine boys’ basketball team for the 2013-14 season.

 Mielke, 35, joined WDC’s teaching staff as a sixth-grade teacher in 2011. The past two years, he coached JV boys’ basketball and served as an assistant cross country coach at WDC.

 Mielke has more than 11 years of experience coaching basketball and track at the high school level, including varsity girls’ basketball coach and varsity track coach at Park Rapids High School in 2007-2008; and varsity girls’ basketball coach at Long Prairie-Grey Eagle from 2003-2005. He’s also held coaching positions in track and cross country at West Fargo and St. Michael/Albertville schools.

 Mielke said being named the new head coach at WDC is a great opportunity for him and he looks forward to leading the boys’ basketball program.

 “I am excited for the challenges that lie ahead, and am thankful to have been given the chance to be a head coach in the WDC district,” Mielke said, adding, “We have facilities that are second to none. My goal is putting a team on the floor that will be competitive night in and night out.”

 As head coach, Mielke plans to focus on team improvement and building a stronger, more conditioned group of player-athletes.

“My expectations are to bring a team-orientated style of play that will focus on overall team improvement on a nightly basis. Strength training will be an integral part of our program and it is our hope that we will not only build stronger basketball players but athletes in general. Knowing we have a schedule that is very difficult, it will be essential that we prepare. My job as head coach will be to script a game plan that will put players in positions to be successful on game night,” Mielke said.

This summer, Mielke is planning to run boys’ basketball camps, as well as begin building a foundation for boys’ basketball for the elementary-age youths.

Activities Director Norm Gallant is anxious for Mielke to become the Wolverines’ next head boys’ basketball coach.

“I am very excited to have Jason on board. Not only does he bring a wealth of basketball knowledge, but he has great communication and organization skills,” Gallant said, adding, “I believe he will build positive relationships with our players too.”

 A native of Annandale, Minn., Mielke and his wife, Tania, have two sons, Luke, 10, and Lincoln, 3, and a third child is due in a week.

WDC boys’ basketball practice begins on Nov. 11, 2013. They open their season Nov. 22 at Pelican Rapids.

Mielke succeeds Doug Haas, who finished this past boys’ basketball season as WDC’s interim head coach after Tom VanErp resigned in December 2012.