Penn basketball coach Al Rhodes captures 600th win
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - While the Penn Kingsmen approached Thursday's road game at South Bend Washington as any other regular season game, the importance was shown in the immediate celebration afterwards.
Why? Because the 71-56 win was the 600th career victory for Penn coach Al Rhodes.
"600 wins is something that's special in Indiana high school basketball," he said after the game. "I couldn't have a better team to do it with. I just really appreciate the seniors, the way they're playing together.I'm very, very proud."
Rhodes is just the 14th coach in state history to reach the 600 mark, and is in the top-five among active coaches. Many of his wins came during his time at Warsaw, where he won the 1984 state title, along with stops at Fort Wayne Northrup and Logansport before returning to his alma mater. He's spent the past 11 seasons at Penn, winning 146 games.
Still, despite his accomplishments, he couldn't help but mention everyone who's been along for the ride.
"I wish my wife was here," he said. "With the Thursday game, she couldn't make it. But she's been the biggest part of that. I think of all the assistant coaches and all the players. A really proud moment here."
Rhodes joked that he'll be satisfied once he passes his former high school coach, Penn's Jim Miller, who sits just ahead at 607.
He should capture that goal in the next few weeks, as the Kingsmen are still undefeated and improve to 5-0 on the season.