Winslow High School Athletic Director and girls’ basketball coach Don Petranovich will return at the helm of the defending Arizona State 3A Conference Champion Winslow Lady Bulldogs. Petranovich led his team to a 30-2 record that culminated in his sixth state championship. He will take a remarkable career record of 621 wins and only 126 losses into the next season.
Some might look upon the successes Petranovich last year and deemed it the right time to retire. He padded his total of the most coaching wins in the history of the state. His team won regional, state and tournament championships. He was named 3A North Region, Arizona 3A Conference, Arizona Republic Small School and Navajo Times Coach of the Year. He is also a candidate for the National Coaches Association Coach of the Year.
Petranovich has an enviable record as an athletic director. During his tenure, the school has built a new, state of the art gymnasium. A softball and baseball field have been constructed near the gymnasium.
He hosts the Winslow Shoot-out Boys’ Basketball Tournament and the Winslow Winter Classic Girls’ Basketball Tournament. Last year saw the addition of the Bojo’s/3c’s Softball Tournament.
It was also during Petranovich’s tenure that the 3A North Region established baseball and softball tournaments with the semi-finals and finals played in Winslow. This development has allowed the Winslow High School teams to play a highly competitive schedule and go into the state tournaments better prepared for that level of competition than otherwise would have been the case.
While Petranovich could have retired with the winning of the 2004 state championship, he felt that he could still be an effective and successful coach and continue to enjoy the experience.
It was likely, however, that it was in the area of his athletic director role that he saw unfinished business to be completed.
In a recent interview, Petranovich envisions a much improved football field including synthetic turf. This type of turf would need less maintenance, and watering would no longer be a problem.
Indeed, Petranovich’s accomplishments are impressive.
The just completed school year saw Winslow High School win a state championship in girls’ basketball and regional championships in football, girls’ basketball, boys’ and girls’ track, baseball and softball.