Setting The (An) tone / New North Baseball Coach Won State Championship


Pat Antone is only a one-season baseball head coach, but during that season he led Boone Grove to the 2018 Class 2A State Championship.

In baseball terms, it’s 1,000 at bat.

Columbus North is hoping production will continue when Antone trains the Bull Dogs next spring. The Chesterton native was named head coach earlier this week.

“I was looking forward to getting another head coach job, but I wanted it to be a place where it would be a good fit for me and for the school, and Columbus North did the trick,” said Antone. “They have good sports programs here, and they have high standards, and I just felt like it would be a really good opportunity for me to come in as a head coach and implement my culture and build one of Indiana state’s elite baseball teams. “

After graduating from Chesterton in 2009, Antone played a year of baseball at Glen Oaks Community College in Michigan. He was then transferred to Valparaiso and had a preferred prime spot, but instead chose to start his coaching career.

“It was a tough decision back then, but looking back it was a good decision because I wouldn’t have learned as much as I did,” said Antone.

Antone trained with Andrean from 2011 to 2013. He then taught at Valparaiso high school and coached there in the spring of 2014.

The following year, Antone taught at St. Patrick’s Elementary and Middle School in Chesterton and was an assistant at Chesterton High School. Then a physical education and bodybuilding position opened at Andrean in the fall of 2015 and he returned there as a teacher and assistant trainer until the spring of 2017.

That fall, Antone took the job of head coach at Boone Grove and taught at his alternative school. He led the Wolves to a 22-5 record in 2018, and a 5-4 win over Southridge 5-4 in the 2A State Title game.

“It’s been a great year, and it started in the fall,” said Antone. “We had a college team that played in the fall and won the conference tournament. We had a great offseason in the weight room and our development and implementation of our hitting and throwing culture,” and we were able to continue to develop and improve as the season continued. “

After that season Antone’s wife Alyssa got a job at Greenwood, so he took an assistant coaching position at Westfield for the 2019 season. He would have been there again in 2020, but this season has was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Antone and Andean’s head coach Dave Pishkur were looking to open a training facility in Northwest Indiana, and Antone was to return as an assistant to Andrean. The money for the installation fell through, but Antone visited Gary’s school twice a week this spring for practice and games.

“It was difficult, but I had already made that commitment and I didn’t want to break it,” said Antone.

Antone will teach special education in North. Pat and Alyssa, who have two-month-old son Joseph, plan to move to the Columbus area as soon as possible.

Pat is hosting a player / parent introductory meeting at 6 p.m. today in the LGI room in North. He intends to talk about the culture he intends to instill.

“The first thing is to define what it is, and these are the beliefs that drive the behaviors that produce the results and the results that we have and experience as a team and a program,” he said.

The three pillars of his Antone culture are competitive excellence, which he defines as “a burning desire to win and perform at an elite level”, a focused energy, which he defines as “putting all your energy into it. concentration and all your efforts to do the necessary work the right way. at the right time “and agape love, which he defines as” unconditional love oriented towards others. It is not based on a feeling or a shared interest, but it is an unusual commitment “.

“Based on these core values ​​and beliefs, we will conduct ourselves in a way that produces the results we seek to achieve and perform at an elite level,” said Antone.

Antone replaces Ben McDaniel, who led the Bull Dogs to one of their best seasons in school history this spring. North won the Indiana Conference and Section titles and spent most of the season ranked first in the state in Class 4A.

Nine seniors, including six starters, have disappeared from this team, but Antone considers the closet far from bare.

“I’ve done my research and talked to other coaches and people and I’ve watched PBR, and I know they have a lot of talent coming back,” Antone said. “I always say, ‘We’re already in the section. We could lose every game we play – which we’re not going to do – but we’re in the section and we have a chance of winning the state championship. ‘Our goal right now is to win the 2022 4A State Championship. “

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