ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

'Blessed' Corsica-Stickney coach Tuschen reaches 500 wins

CORSICA -- Mike Tuschen said he's been blessed with the best. The long-time boys basketball coach captured his 500th career win in Corsica-Stickney's 72-45 win over Mount Vernon/Plankinton on Friday. Tuschen, who is now one of eight boys coaches ...

Corsica-Stickney coach Mike Tuschen talks with Hayden Plamp on Friday at Corsica. Tuschen won his 500th career coaching victory during the game. (Ryan Deal / Republic)
Corsica-Stickney coach Mike Tuschen talks with Hayden Plamp on Friday at Corsica. Tuschen won his 500th career coaching victory during the game. (Ryan Deal / Republic)
Mitchell Republic file photo

CORSICA -- Mike Tuschen said he’s been blessed with the best.
The long-time boys basketball coach captured his 500th career win in Corsica-Stickney’s 72-45 win over Mount Vernon/Plankinton on Friday.
Tuschen, who is now one of eight boys coaches in state history to hit the 500-mark, didn’t want to boast about himself when asked about reaching the milestone. Instead, he passed off the credit to his current and former players.
“When you get to this milestone, I think it is something you just look back and go, ‘Wow, I have been blessed with so many great athletes to coach,’ ” Tuschen said. “It’s just been an honor. You have to enjoy the athletes you are given and I have just been blessed.”
The coach now joins an exclusive club with seven other coaches to reach 500 or more wins. Custer’s Larry Luitjens is the all-time leader with 748, while Mitchell’s Gary Munsen ranks second with 672 wins and Armour’s Burnell Glanzer sits third with 617. Other coaches to achieve the mark include Parker’s Gale Hoover (577), Langford Area’s Paul Raasch (514), Mobridge’s Jim Schlekeway (502) and Selby Area’s Doug Groth (500).
Tuschen couldn’t help but appreciate the magnitude of joining such an impressive list of South Dakota coaching legends.
“I will just say, ‘Wow,’ ” Tuschen said. “Those are some coaches that been around back a long time ago that I looked up to. Those were coaches that you watch their programs and you’ve seen their success and it’s a great honor just to even be mentioned in that league.”
Tuschen, 58, has coached boys basketball for 34 seasons. He led Stickney to a state championship in 2002. Now consolidated, Corsica-Stickney began its cooperative in 2009-10 and the Jaguars won the state championship in 2011.
“Both communities -- Stickney and Corsica -- have been tremendous communities to coach in,” Tuschen said. “They are communities that are supportive.”
Luke Bamberg was a standout on the 2011 title team and is in his first season as a Jaguars’ assistant coach. Bamberg has competed against and with Tuschen before joining the staff this season. Bamberg, who hails from Corsica, played against Tuschen before the co-op was formed.
But no matter the situation, Bamberg knows Tuschen is going to lead with passion and energy.
“He brings the energy just as much as the players,” Bamberg said. “That’s why he’s such a players’ coach. He is just easy to relate to.”
Opposing coach Eric Denning, of Mount Vernon/Plankinton, said Tuschen will always put a hard-nosed team on the court and will get the most out of his players.
“He’s always been intense,” Denning said. “He’s always been a fiery guy and I think that shows in the way his kids play, as well.”
Where does that passion and energy stem from?
“It’s just a passion of seeing athletes that try and find that they have more to give than what maybe they think they do,” Tuschen said. “That’s kind of the reward I get out of this career.”
Tuschen doesn’t how much longer he will coach, but said he will continue to do so with maximum effort.
“I have always promised myself that if I couldn’t give 100 percent, or I couldn’t come to the practices with everything I have got, then that’s when I am going to quit,” he said. “I just think all athletes deserve 100 percent from their coach.”

Related Topics: CORSICABOYS BASKETBALL
What To Read Next
Prep basketball action from around the state for Saturday, Jan. 28.
SDSU men blow 22-point lead in loss at Western Illinois
As a team, the Kernels knocked down six of their 16 (37.5%) 3-point tries and shot 17-for-43 (39.5%) from the field.
Prep basketball action from around the state for Friday, Jan. 27.