When Rob Radloff and his family moved to Prescott from Hayward, he intended to watch Cardinal basketball from the stands, solely as a parent and fan.
But according to Radloff, coaching is "in his blood".
"I never would have guessed I would be in this position," Radloff said, "but I am certainly excited for what is to come."
Radloff, who formerly served as an assistant coach for the varsity team, was promoted to head coach of the Prescott Cardinals girls basketball program at the Prescott School Board's Wednesday, June 19, meeting and will take over for former head coach Ron Murphy this winter.
Murphy resigned in May after serving as the Cardinals' head coach for five seasons, and Radloff knows his predecessor's decision to step down came with hesitation.
"I know it was not easy for (Murphy) because of his love of the game and the girls in the program," Radloff said.
However, knowing the program he helped transform would be in good hands made Murphy's decision slightly easier.
"Ron and I talked and discussed the possibility of him stepping down and him feeling more comfortable doing it if I was to apply," Radloff said. "Ron has done a great job coaching the girls program and left the program going in the right direction."
Radloff wants to build on the progression Murphy installed.
Radloff and his staff, including Tim Cerni and Mike Gray, have started summer skill sessions for the Cardinal returners whom Radloff feels fortunate to be able to coach.
"Something I've really enjoyed being involved with our program is the character of the girls," Radloff said. "These girls have created such a positive culture and atmosphere that makes girls feel included. It's a fun atmosphere, but these girls work hard and are determined to be successful not only on the court but also in the classroom."
The Cardinals will be without 2019 Prescott High School graduates Sydney Benck, KiKi Carey, Kaelyn Lewis, Allie Murphy and Haylee Yaeger next season, but will lean on the experience of 10 returners who've already impressed coach Radloff this summer.
"I can't lie - I had goosebumps after watching these girls play their sixth game in the Shootout in the Dells," Radloff said when asked about the team's recent tournament in Wisconsin Dells. "I only introduced a new offense for a half hour and I saw these girls become more comfortable in each game we played. If we continue to improve and execute everything I plan to throw at them, watch out."
The Cardinals went 4-2 in their first tournament of the offseason, and their two losses came from Rochester and Hutchinson.
The Cardinals will return to the JustAGame Fieldhouse in the Dells on Thursday, June 27, to compete in the Jerry Petitguoe invitational tournament and will conclude their summer action with a July tournament in Elk Mound along with continuous play in the St. Croix Central summer league.
Radloff thanked his wife Kelly, his players and their parents and the community for the recent support he's received and hopes he can "live up to all of the excitement".
"It should be a season to fill the gym and see Prescott come together to support the Prescott girls basketball program," Radloff said.
Radloff is starting a booster club for the girls basketball team and says he's open to fundraising ideas and donations.