Reaching a magnificent milestone

Sports Editor

Peszneker earns 450th win as Wayzata’s coach

Already far and away the all time leader in Minnesota high school girls soccer coaching victories, Wayzata’s Tony Peszneker jumped over a new milestone with this team’s 3-1 win over Cretin-Derham Hall Sept. 9.

Wayzata High girls soccer coach Tony Peszneker gets his team organized at halftime during a 0-0 tie Sept. 5 at Edina. (Sun Sailor photo by John Sherman)
Wayzata High girls soccer coach Tony Peszneker gets his team organized at halftime during a 0-0 tie Sept. 5 at Edina. (Sun Sailor photo by John Sherman)

On that day, the Trojans gave Peszneker his 450th career win.
Asked how he did it, Peszneker said, “Longevity.”

He has been Wayzata’s head coach since the fall of 1990, and in his 28 seasons, he has always had winning teams.

“The first six seasons I coached here, I was still playing for the Minnesota Thunder,” said Peszneker. “It was easier for me to get out on the field with the girls and demonstrate skills. Now I have my younger coaches doing that.”

While the 450-win milestone is something to be proud of, Peszneker said the Trojans’ ongoing success in State Tournament play is his proudest achievement. He has coached in 18 final fours at state with these results – 7 championships, 5 runner-up finishes and 6 third-place finishes.

“The Trojans had a string of six or seven years when we were in the final four every year,” said Peszneker. “I’ve been fortunate to have great athletes who are good soccer players. And I am grateful that the Wayzata administration has always supported me. The athletic directors – John Muchlinski and Jaime Sherwood have been great to work with.
“The most rewarding thing about coaching is the opportunity to help so many young athletes. I won a number of championships when I was playing the game, and those were my blood, my sweat and my tears. The things the girls do on the field make us state champions.”

Peszneker said each team he has coached is special and created special memories within the program.

“Soccer isn’t the biggest sport on campus,” said Peszneker. “And sometimes we get lost in the shuffle.”

Still, fans who follow the team are proud of way the Trojans win, and how they present themselves on the field.

Now that Peszneker has reached the 450-win mark, the 500-win mark is within reach.

“I’m still a long way from that,” he said. “I am taking it year by year. Coaching is still a lot of fun, and we have such a dedicated group of players here.”

Could this be another state championship year for Wayzata?

Going into this week’s action, the Trojans stood 5-0-1 overall. They are getting scoring from a lot of players, including senior captain Marissa Kalkar, who leads the team with nine goals. In the victory over Cretin-Derham Hall on Saturday, Lily Gilbertson, Elizabeth Page and Sydney Remark each scored a goal, while Madison Lo picked up her fifth win of the season in goal.

The next challenge is a Lake Conference match at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, against Minnetonka at Minnetonka’s Einer Anderson Stadium.

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