Greg Nesbitt has been biding his time to take over a high school baseball program. The opportunity has arrived in Prior Lake.
Nesbitt recently was named the third coach in the history of the Lakers’ program. He replaces Ryan Schwertman, who resigned after three years at the helm. Darwin Busselman guided the Lakers for the first 42 years.
Nesbitt coached the Burnsville Cobras American Legion team for the past nine summers. The team finished 36-12 this past season and advanced to the World Series in Shelby, N.C.
“I was offered the Prior Lake job while at the regional tournament [in Fargo, N.D.], so it was a little difficult to connect with the Prior Lake baseball community immediately. But every day I meet more people and learn more about the program, and I am getting more and more excited about what this program can accomplish,” Nesbitt said. “We are going to need to make sacrifices, display commitment, work extremely hard and play together as a team. When that happens, I really believe that the sky is the limit.”
Nesbitt has served as an assistant coach in Lakeville South’s program the past two years.
“The last three weeks have been a whirlwind of changes in my coaching life,” Nesbitt said. “In that time, Burnsville competed in the regional tournament and World Series and I accepted the head coach position at Prior Lake High School.
“I wish I could say it was a dream come true, but even I couldn’t imagine what we accomplished this summer. I have coached in the Burnsville summer program for 16 years. They gave me my first coaching opportunity and I will always be very grateful for that.”
High expectations to start
Tracie Randall is in her first season as coach of Farmington’s girls’ soccer team. That isn’t deterring her from setting lofty goals.
“The players are focused and determined this year to make a state tournament appearance,” said Randall, who served as an assistant coach under Rob Carpentier last season.
If the Tigers accomplish the feat, it will mark their first state tournament appearance in school history.
Randall has 15 letterwinners back from a team that won a school-record 12 games last season. The Tigers were shut out by Lakeville North 2-0 in the Class 2A, Section 1 finals.
The Tigers have four Missota all-conference players returning — senior defenders Izzie Ferm, Kayla Kukala and Hannah Miller, and junior goalkeeper Ashley Becker.
“We are strong on defense and have flexibility in our offense with various players,” Randall said. “Collectively, the girls are supporting each other and working diligently.”
• The Mickelsons — senior Rachel and sophomore Addie — got the Lakeville South girls’ soccer season off to a good start in a 9-0 victory over Rochester John Marshall in nonconference play. Addie had a hat trick while Rachel had one goal and four assists.