After 6 WPIAL boys titles, Chartiers Valley’s Tim McConnell becomes girls basketball coach
In many ways, Tim McConnell will coach girls basketball the way he always coached the boys, with maybe one difference.
“I don’t think I’ll be as intense,” said McConnell, whose fiery style earned him more than 500 wins and six WPIAL boys titles. “With girls you’ve got to be a little bit softer, but the game’s the same. The expectations will be the same.”
The Chartiers Valley school board voted 5-3 Tuesday night to let McConnell switch jobs and become the girls basketball coach, presenting a new challenge for one of the most successful coaches in WPIAL history.
McConnell has a 552-146 career record in 25 seasons with the boys team. However, his Colts finished 8-14 last season and missed the WPIAL playoffs for the first time.
He replaces Dan Slain, who resigned after three seasons.
“When the girls coach resigned I did some thinking,” McConnell said. “I wasn’t sure I was getting through to my players. I thought maybe I needed a change. When that opened up I thought that would be a good opportunity for something different, try something new. I threw my hat in the ring, and it worked out.”
McConnell won WPIAL championships with sons T.J. and Matty, and now could celebrate another title this winter with daughter Megan, who’s a star junior for the Colts. The girls team reached the WPIAL Class 5A semifinals and the PIAA first round last season.
Coaching his daughter wasn’t his motivation, McConnell said, but it’s an opportunity he appreciates.
“She’s in California, and I guess she saw (the news) on Twitter or something,” McConnell said. “She just called and said she’s really happy. I said I’m happy too, and I can’t wait to get started.”