WPIAL Coaches Corner – Ron Moncrief

Monday, January 16, 2017 | 5:06 PM

In this new feature titled “Coach’s Corner”, I will be interviewing a different coach every week and asking them questions about their personal life and about coaching. Hopefully their answers will not only shed some light on how they coach their respective teams, but also allow readers to get to know the men behind the fields/courts.

This week features Vincentian Academy girls basketball coach Ronald Moncrief. Coach Moncrief has coached the Royals for 11 seasons, including this year. He has led them to 6 WPIAL titles in the last 7 years, and won back to back PIAA state crowns in 2014 and 2015. Let’s take a look inside Coach Moncrief’s corner:

  1. Who was your favorite sports player growing up and why?

My favorite sports player growing up was Michael Jordan because he dominated the game on both ends of the floor and also made his teammates better, and he was a winner by winning championships.

  1. What was your favorite TV show as a kid?

My favorite TV show as a kid was SportsCenter.

  1. What was your favorite holiday growing up? Why?

My favorite holiday growing up was Christmas because I liked receiving and giving gifts and spending time with my family.

  1. If you could take only 3 things to a deserted island, what would they be?

I would take a boat so I could get off the Island, My Bible, and photos of my family and love ones so when I get tired and need motivation to get off the island I can look at them.

  1. What are some of your pet peeves?

Disloyalty, Excuses, and people who take things and people for granted.

  1. What words of wisdom would you pass onto your childhood self?

To always put God first in your life.

  1. This is your 11th season with the Vincentian Academy Royals. You have won 5 WPIAL titles in a row, and 6 in the last 7 years. How can you explain all this success, especially when you consider the loss players to graduation every year?

First I have to give God the glory because without God nothing is possible. Second having good players that buy into our program. We try to set a winning culture on and off the court with the players so when the freshmen come in the upperclassmen are able to teach the underclassmen what it takes to be successful on the court and in the classroom.

  1. What is the most important thing you try to preach to your players every year?

To have a championship mindset on the court and in life. As coaches we use basketball to teach life lessons, and when it comes to basketball to always believe in yourself and your teammates, and when you step on the court be confident but remain humble. But the most important thing I preach every year is about Jesus. Being that I coach at a Catholic School, I can openly talk about Jesus and I talk to my players about Jesus and make Jesus apart of our program by praying before and after every practice and game and having team Bible Studies.

  1. What is your proudest moment as a high school basketball coach?

Winning Back to Back PIAA State Championships.

  1. 5 WPIAL titles in a row is an amazing statistic. You added to it twice by going on to win PIAA state crowns in back to back years, 2014-2015. What was special about those two years?

Winning 5 WPIAL titles in a row is special because there are a lot of good teams in our district and it’s hard to win a WPIAL Championship. But winning two PIAA Championships in a row is very special because that means for those two year we were the best team in our classification in the state of Pennsylvania.

  1. Who inspires you the most when it comes to coaching?

Jesus, my mom and my daughter.

  1. What do you normally do in the offseason?

I try to improve on my coaching skills on areas where I feel I need to improve by going to coaching clinics or purchasing basketball DVDs so that way I can continue to learn. Also I coach AAU Basketball.

  1. What was your most embarrassing moment as a high school basketball coach?

When one of my former players was trying to save a ball that was going out of bounds and she stepped on my foot and gave me a stress fracture and I had to wear a boot for a while after that.

  1. Vincentian is now playing in Class 2-A this season, due to the recent classification expansion. What are your thoughts on the expansion? Has it had any effect on your team’s mentality or preparation for any games?

I think the expansion has pros and cons. I think with the expansion some classifications lost some really good rivalries, and some teams have to travel farther. Some pros are it gives other teams an opportunity to win a Section or WPIAL Championship that didn’t have a chance in the past. It hasn’t affected our teams mentally approach to games because we do not stress over things we have no control over, also even though we were in Class A for years we were used to playing teams in larger classifications.

  1. What made you want to become a coach?

Being a basketball coach was always a dream of mine, so after I finished playing college basketball, I wanted to still be part of basketball and being a basketball coach gave me an opportunity to be still part of the game.


More Basketball

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7-time WPIAL champion coach Spencer Stefko steps down at North Allegheny
Mike Iuzzolino takes over Sewickley Academy boys basketball program
Belle Vernon hires former Shaler, Gateway coach to lead girls basketball program