Below is a detailed outlook for Providence Academy winter sports.

2019-2020 Girls Hockey Preview

Coach:

  • Dan Berthiaume is in his sixth year as Head Coach of Minnehaha United.
  • He also coaches softball at St. Agnes, which has competed in four consecutive Section championships and has twice qualified for the MSHSL state tournament.
  • Two time Section 4AA Coach of the Year in softball.
  • Read his entire coaching bio here.

Look Back to 2018-2019:

  • Last year we finished 15-12 overall.
  • United won a playoff game against Armstrong Cooper before losing to Blake.
  • Ava Wasserman, Hannah Schommer, and alumna Jodie Clay were among the top scorers on the team.

Captains and contributors:

  • The co-op has one captain from PA, senior Hannah Schommer. Last season Hannah scored 16 goals and recorded nine assists.
  • Sophomore Ava Wasserman led the team in goals last season with 21.
  • Sophomore Ellie Wasserman is one of the team’s goalies.
  • Freshman Grace Petzold made her varsity debut early this season.

Outlook:

  • United plays in the IMAC, arguably the toughest girls hockey conference in the state, with the other three teams perennially ranked.
  • At the section level, United has returned to Class A after a two-year adventure in Class AA.
  • The Class A outlook does not look a lot rosier against the likes of St. Paul United, South Saint Paul, and Mahtomedi, among others.
  • Coach Berthiaume shared, “After two consecutive winning seasons, it will be difficult to make it three in a row. We lost three very good players to graduation and have only one returning defensemen. Some of our better forwards from last season are taking on the challenge of learning a new position, and others will have to step up and play bigger roles than they have in past seasons.”

Style of play, strengths and weaknesses:

  • United has a green crop of defensemen who are good hockey players and will develop as the year progresses.
  • Looking for an offensive spark from Ava Wasserman and Schommer.

2019-2020 Girls Basketball Preview

Coach:

  • Conner Goetz returns for his third year of coaching at Providence Academy (seven years of experience overall)
  • Read his entire coaching bio here.

Look Back to 2018-2019:

  • Last year the team had a record of 20-9 and made it all the way to the section semifinals before falling to eventual Section 5AA champion Holy Family.
  • Alumna Maggie Murphy was recognized as an All-State Honorable Mention Player.
  • Hailey Hohenecker broke the steals record in a season.

Captains and contributors:

  • Senior Hailey Hohenecker – Captain, guard, committed to the University of Sioux Falls. She has been a three-year starter and was in the top ten in the state for steals.
  • Senior Madie Anderson – Captain, guard. Has been a two-year starter. She was second on the team in three pointers made last season.
  • Senior Lauren Kettler – Captain, post. She was also a captain for the Volleyball team. Has been a varsity player for three years.
  • Junior Olivia Klammer – Captain, guard. Defensive specialist.
  • Sophomore Maria Counts – Post. She had an excellent season last year and is primed for an excellent second season.
  • Players to watch for:
    • Freshman Grace Counts – Post
    • Freshman Kyra Miller – Guard

Outlook:

  • The Lions look to finish strong in the IMAC and Section 5AA again.
  • Their goal is to play to the best of their ability each and every game.
  • Coach Goetz shared, “Whether the shots go in or don’t is something that is out of our control. However, our effort is something that we can always control. If we focus on our job and do the little things the correct way, we will consider our season a success. Similar to what Coach PJ Fleck says, we want to be 1-0 in each game we play.”

Style of play, strengths and weaknesses:

  • The Lions have strong returning guard play and young posts who are very athletic.
  • With this combination, it will help lead them to a successful year.
  • The Lions hope to play faster than they have in years past but their main staple will continue to be defense. The philosophy is to hold opponents to below their season average every single game.

2019-2020 Boys Hockey Preview

Coach:

  • Hal Tearse continues to lead the boys hockey program.
  • His background features 47 years of coaching overall with 12 years as PA’s head coach and three years as the program director.
  • Read his entire coaching bio here.

Look Back to 2018-2019:

  • Last year we won nine games, lost five by one goal, and had two players with significant scoring stats.
  • Grant Ellings led the state in assists.
  • Zach Giesler finished with top ten stats for the state.

Captains and contributors:

  • During the off season, four schools from the Legacy co-op joined the PA program. This is key since PA graduated eight seniors last year and needed to replenish our numbers.
  • Currently as the Lions head into the first week of play, they have 32 players with a combination of returning players, Legacy co-op players, and younger players moving up to the high school program.
  • PA senior captain George Wehmann will lead the blue line corps.
  • Heritage Christian Academy senior captain Issac O’Brien (Heritage Academy) will center the second line.
  • PA junior assistant captain Joshua Koskie will anchor the four goalies in the program after seeing significant action last year.
  • PA sophomore Charlie Peterson returns greatly improved and will skate with Wehmann on D.
  • The new players from Legacy are sophomores and juniors.
  • Early indications show they will all be significant contributors as the season develops.
  • As a newly blended team, it is too early to assess how the team will jell and which players will be major contributors.

Outlook:

  • Tough Conference with AA Blake and AA Minnehaha.
  • Coach Tearse shared, “As we are in a transition year, our team goals are to improve every day each week so we are prepared for sections.”

Style of play, strengths and weaknesses:

Coach Tearse said, “We will play hard. We will have a combination of traditional and current pro-style play as individual player abilities allow. Once we assess our strengths, we will adjust our play to maximize our results. We also have several younger players who will be playing high school hockey for the first time. They will improve each week as they adjust to the speed and increased physical play.”

2019-2020 Boys Basketball Preview

Coach:

  • Providence Academy welcomes Steve Brown as its new head coach.
  • Previously served as Director of the Minnesota Timberwolves Basketball Academy for the past ten years.
  • Led as Head Coach at Michigan Tech University.
  • Charter member of the South Dakota Basketball Hall of Fame.
  • Read his entire coaching bio here.

Look Back to 2018-2019:

  • 2018-19 squad went 6-3 in IMAC play, which was good for third place.
  • Record of 15-11 overall, which included hosting and winning one section game.

Captains and contributors:

This year’s captains are seniors Jacob Halek, Sean Rocheford, and Tommy Villafana.

Outlook:

  • Coach Brown predicted, “We have a very inexperienced team playing Varsity Basketball, but we have a talented group of young men who are ready to make their footprint in the sand. As the season moves along, I can really see this team making tremendous strides and playing their best basketball at tournament time.
  • The Lions will have three teams this year, Varsity, Junior Varsity, and C team, and the coaching staff is very excited about the number of kids who are out for the sport.

Style of play, strengths and weaknesses:

Coach Brown said, “The season starts early this year with two games over Thanksgiving, which we welcome since you can learn so much from playing against the competition. We’re looking forward to an exciting season.”

Previews for Nordic Ski, Alpine Ski, and Boys Swimming and Diving were not available by press time and will be communicated at a later date.

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