Even at the young age of 26, Tyler Stracener has a basketball history that goes deep. Stracener played at Mountlake Terrace High School and Bellevue College, has years of coaching in AAU select basketball, spent a season as an assistant at Monroe High School and is the owner of Complete Basketball Training, his private training business in Bothell.
Now Stracener can add another line to his resume: head coach of the girls’ team at Mountlake Terrace.
Stracener has been named to lead the Hawks’ girls’ basketball program and is eager to get the 2017-2018 year started. “There is no shortage of enthusiasm about basketball at Terrace,” he noted. “I cannot wait to see what this next season brings and I am excited about the future we are capable of creating for this program.”
Stracener, a 2009 graduate of Terrace, called the choice of accepting an offer to head up girls’ program “an easy decision for me to make.”
“Taking this job was simple for me,” he explained. “When I started coaching my goal was to give back to the programs that gave to me as a player.”
Stracener played for Coach Nalin Sood at Terrace throughout his high school career and helped the 2008-2009 boys’ squad to a 17-8 record and an appearance in the State 4A tournament. The 6-foot-7 center is also among the top shooters in school history with a 62 percent field goal shooting percentage his senior year and a 60 percent shooting percentage as a sophomore in 2006-2007.
Stracener went on to have two strong seasons playing for Bellevue College before ankle troubles ended his playing career.
While his playing days may have been cut short, Stracener’s experience as a coach has been building ever since he joined the coaching ranks at Friends of Hoops AAU basketball in 2009. And although his time coaching has been with boys from third grade through high school, Stracener anticipates the transition to high school girls’ hoops will be an easy one.
“Though my years of coaching boys’ basketball I have been able to learn a lot,” he said. “I have been lucky enough to be surrounded by some great coaches and I have picked up quite a bit from them. If there is one thing I have learned about basketball it is that the fundamentals of the game never change.”
“This may be a new scene for me, but in the end basketball is basketball and everything I have learned as a boys’ coach will help me this year as the girls’ coach at Terrace,” Stracener added.
Stracener will be the third coach of the MTHS girls’ basketball varsity team in four years as the program as struggled to earn wins on the court and attract some of the school’s top athletes to tryout.
“As a head coach the best thing I can do for the program is to provide consistency, and that is exactly what I plan to do: giving these girls a sense of direction as a team and guide them through the process,” Stracener stressed. “Doing so will help us on the basketball floor this season, which will begin to build interest among the other athletes within the school.”
Though a challenge, Stracener believes he can be successful in his new role as girls basketball head coach at the school.
“Coming back to Terrace is like coming back home for me,” he explained. “As an athlete at Terrace I was surrounded by great people who wanted me to succeed in everything I did, and it is the same thing now.”
“Being at Terrace is like being part of a family,” he added. “Go Hawks!”
–By Doug Petrowski