Going deep in the PIAA state basketball playoffs is common fare at Trinity – especially so the last 39 seasons, as under the tutelage of Coach Larry Kostelac, Jr., the journey there is an expected rite that comes with March.
In the opening round of the PIAA Class 3A boys’ bracket, the Shamrocks hosted Vaux Big Picture Charter School out of Philadelphia and promptly tamed the Cougars by posting a 35-point lead after the first 16 minutes. While the win moved the ’Rocks into the second round quite easily, the victory marked the 800th for legendary Coach Kostelac.
After the game, the Trinity community honored the coach with an 800th win basketball and other team tributes to mark the milestone at center court. Coach Kostelac thanked the partisan crowd for all the years of support and commitment to the program and, amidst the hugs and handshakes, it was vintage Coach Kostelac who turned the limelight off of himself and back to his core principles of teamwork and looking forward.
“When I got into this business a longtime ago, I always have said that it is about the next possession, and that is what my focus always has been, the next possession…. Right now, we are looking to get back into the gym and prepare for next Wednesday and the second round,” Coach Kostelac said after the low-key celebration. “A wise person said to me a long time ago that the good Lord put eyes in the front of your head for a reason, and that reason is to look forward, and not dwell on the past. It’s about the next possession, and that is how I have always coached.”
(Photos by Chris Heisey, The Catholic Witness.)
By Chris Heisey, The Catholic Witness