Four years: 100 wins – Croup’s Corner

Written By Josh Croup, Sports Columnist

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Head coach Tony Grenek has turned the Point Park women’s basketball program around.

He recorded his 100th career victory on Feb. 18 against crosstown rival Carlow University, but he’s waiting to celebrate for now.

“The 100 wins, I’m sure someday I’ll reflect and think, ‘What a great honor that is’,” Grenek said.

The game as a whole was more important than basketball. The team held its annual cancer awareness game with the focus on raising money for 2-year-old Aiden Zangrilli, of Pittsburgh, who is currently battling leukemia.

“To be honest with you, this day is a lot more important than [the] 100th win with the causes that we played for today,” Grenek said.

Grenek began his coaching career at Point Park during the 2011-12 season. He gave new life to a program that was struggling to remain relevant. It took just four years and 123 games to gather 100 victories, and he is now the winningest coach in program history.

Leading up to this season, he led the team to three straight conference championships and national tournament appearances. This is more impressive when one considers the program that he took over.

While it took Grenek only four years to win 100 games, the previous 13 seasons combined saw only 100 wins. From the 1998-99 to the 2010-11 season, Point Park was a combined 100-238 and cycled through five different coaches.

Before Grenek started, the team put together only seven winning seasons from its inaugural season of 1978-79 through the 2010-11 season. In 33 seasons, the team only had seven in which they won more games than they lost. Grenek wrapped up his fourth consecutive winning season last week.

When Grenek took over, the team never recorded a 20-win season. Grenek has never had a season with less than 23 wins.

Of the 16 coaches in program history, only three managed career winning records: Luke Ruppell, 30-21 from 1984-86; Pat Wallace, 26-24 from 1982-84; and Dan Kail, 16-12 from 1987-88.

That’s it.

When Grenek started his coaching career at Point Park, he had a program that was virtually lifeless. He has since given the team a new identity, a winning identity.

Before Grenek started, a 20 win season and a conference tournament championship were mere fantasies. Now, they are expected.

There are no limits as to where this team can go. They enter the conference tournament this week as the No. 2 seed in the North Division, and just three games stand between them and a fourth consecutive trip to the national tournament under Grenek.