The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper


In 2006, former Woodmore coach Mike DeStazio told The Press he missed being

   Mike DeStazio

involved with high school basketball and was be on the prowl looking for new opportunities.

This May 25 non-renewal of Tom Kontak’s contract by the Genoa school board gave him that opportunity. At the June 30 Genoa school board regular meeting, DeStazio was hired to replace Kontak.

DeStazio, an Elmore resident, coached both boys and girls basketball programs at Woodmore between 1980 and 2003. He coached girls from 1994-2003, recording 149 wins and 52 losses, which ranks him No. 1 at the girls’ level at that school. In 22 years at Woodmore, his teams won 260 games overall.

His girls’ teams won Suburban Lakes League titles in 1995 and 1997 and captured five sectional titles. Woodmore went on to the regional tournament three of four years.

DeStazio started his coaching career with Woodmore junior high boys’ teams and as a varsity assistant. He then led the Wildcats junior varsity boys’ team before switching over to coach the JV girls squad. His last JV girls’ team went 19-1 in 1993-94.

When head girls varsity coach Bob Hathaway decided to step down at the end of that season, DeStazio was hired to lead the girls program, beginning his career at Woodmore.

It is not as if DeStazio has been dormant since then. He coached a boys’ third grade team from St. Thomas School, which competes in Catholic Youth Organization leagues.

“I’ve been doing some referring. I do a little bit of fifth and sixth grade and a couple camps, but nothing big. My grandson played for a little Catholic school in Toledo, and I coached his team. You just never lose the passion to coach,” DeStazio said.

This month, he is turning his attention to the upcoming varsity players at Genoa. The Ohio High School Athletic Association allows basketball coaches to spend 10 days providing instruction to their players in the summer.

“Being I started late, that’s not an issue,” DeStazio said. “We’re going to play three Tuesday nights in the Steve Mix league, and we’ve got some scrimmages with some local schools, Rossford and Arcadia, coming up here in July. I’ve got shooting clinics, so we’re busy for July, but we had to do that. We lost some time.

“I’m excited. First of all, I met the girls last Thursday, and we had a practice (last week), and we have about potentially about 27 girls in 9-12. We practiced two hours and these kids work super hard. I’m real proud of them because you’ve got a new coach, new system, so to speak. And, they worked hard. We had a good two-hour practice.”

DeStazio was elected to the Woodmore school board position in November of 2003, and he remains on the board today. His name is household word among basketball circles locally because of the success he had at Woodmore. Plus, he has ties with the Genoa community.

“A lot of people know me because of coaching, and my ties come from that, and I lived in Genoa for five years in the 1970s,” DeStazio.

He will eventually have the fortune of playing in a new facility, too. Genoa Schools is in the process of putting out bids for construction of a new gymnasium.

DeStazio will have his work cut out for him filling Kontak’s shoes. In the past five seasons, Genoa girls’ basketball leads the SLL in total league wins with 61, followed by Eastwood (51), Elmwood (49), Lake (43), Otsego (40), Woodmore (36), and Gibsonburg (30).

Kontak’s basketball teams over six seasons since 2004-05 are a combined 91-44. In 2008-09, he was named the District 7 Division III Coach of the Year.

While at Genoa, Kontak coached 24 All-SLL player selections, 16 all-district players, four all-state players, one junior college player, and two NCAA Division I college players.

Kontak’s round ball teams finished first or second in the Suburban Lakes League five of the past six years. Under Kontak, Genoa won two back-to-back championships in2006-07 and 2007-08 and three times were league runner-ups (2005-06, 2008-09, 2009-10). The last two seasons, the Comets finished second behind an undefeated and state-ranked Lake team.

DeStazio will have a clinic at Genoa Middle School on July 21 from 9-11 a.m. for all incoming Genoa girls’ basketball players in grades 8-12.




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