Freeport hires Wayne Greiser as boys basketball coach
By: Doug Gulasy
Thursday, May 10, 2018 | 1:30 PM
Freeport held an open-gym boys basketball workout Thursday, part of normal offseason training.
But the session gave the Yellowjackets' new coach a chance to work on his first official day on the job.
The district's school board on Wednesday voted to elevate Wayne Greiser, 40, an assistant for the past four seasons, to coach. The 1996 Freeport graduate replaces Mike Beale in the top chair on the sidelines, and Beale will shift to assistant.
“Not a whole lot's going to change, just moving over a seat on the bench,” Greiser said. “The staff's going to remain intact, so it'll be pretty similar from the seasons past. We're on the same journey, it's just a different bus driver now.”
Freeport is approaching the move as business-as-usual with continuity on the coaching staff. The Yellowjackets qualified for the WPIAL Class 4A playoffs each of the past two seasons, falling to South Fayette in the first round both years.
Greiser previously coached Yough from 2010-14, compiling a record of 21-66 with one playoff appearance in four seasons. He also worked as an assistant at Valley from 2007-10.
At Freeport, Greiser believes he has an advantage not only in his familiarity with the program but also because he lives in the district, compared with the hour-long commute he had when he coached at Yough. Adding some intrigue to the equation, Freeport and Yough play in the same Section 1-4A.
Greiser said he considered other local openings in recent years, but when Beale decided to step back, it provided an opportunity for him to become a head coach again.
“Definitely in the back of my mind, it was a goal,” he said. “It wasn't something that had to be done this season, next season. I definitely wanted to get back in and do it again. I'm looking forward to doing it again, especially at the alma mater.”
Beale coached Freeport for three separate stints, totaling 11 seasons, and was an assistant under Garrie Davies. Also a former Freeport player and a teacher at the high school, Beale will remain connected to the program as a member of Greiser's staff.
“Just having Mike around with all the experience he's had, it's great because he's teaching in the high school,” Greiser said. “It keeps the line of communication open with our players.”