Mt Pleasant News
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Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | May 22, 2018

Rundquist resigns, headed to Iowa City West

May 16, 2018
Photo by: MPN file photo Paul Rundquist

By Andy Krutsinger,

Mt. Pleasant News

 

Mt. Pleasant boys’ basketball coach Paul Rundquist submitted his resignation at Mt. Pleasant High School on Tuesday. The long-time Panther coach will take a teaching job at Iowa City West.

Rundquist has been a head coach for two decades, starting his coaching career at Mediapolis before moving to Mt. Pleasant. In his 18 seasons as Panther head coach, Rundquist has led the Panthers to six state tournament appearances, including a state championship in 2012.

Most recently, Rundquist’s Panthers have been to two-straight state tournaments, getting knocked out in the quarterfinals in each of the last two seasons. Mt. Pleasant has also won three-straight Southeast Conference titles.

Rundquist’s father, Gordon Rundquist, is an assistant ot Steve Bergman, and has had an extremely successful head coaching career of his own. Coach Rundquist says the opportunity to coach with the two of them helped lead him to his decision.

“My wife and I thought long and hard about this for quite some time,” Rundquist said. “In the end, this was a professional opportunity for me that was too good to pass up.”

Runquist says details are still being worked out as to how he will help with the team but that he is excited to coach alongside two very accomplished men.

“The chance to work alongside two Hall of Fame coaches, one being my father, is incredibly appealing,” Rundquist says.

The boys’ basketball team has been led by the same core group the last four years. This year’s graduating class was one of the winningest groups in Panther history. Rundquist says he’s had other opportunities to leave, but the timing just wasn’t right, and that leaving before the 2018 class graduated would have been tough.

“The class of 2018 was a special group of kids and it would have been dificult to leave them, but every class is a special group to me,” Rundquist says. “We have quality kids her and I cannot thank them enough for their dedication to the game and for allowing themselves to be coached. I’m very proud of all of our kids, basketball players and non basketball players at Mt. Pleasant.”

Rundquist says he feels like the basketball program has gotten to a level where they can compete with the best teams around the state in all classes. He credits a slew of good players and dedicated coaches for all the recent success.

The search is now on for a new head coach at Mt. Pleasant. The team will look brand new next season, with an all-new starting lineup along with the coaching change.

In parting, Rundquist wanted to thank another long time Panther coach for bringing him into the Mt. Pleasant community.

“I am eternally grateful and indebted to Coach Bob Jensen for bringing me to Mt. Pleasant and believing in me,” Rundquist said. “I love this school and love this community.”

Rundquist held a team-meeting and says he had a good conversation with the players prior to the announcement of his resignation.

“I wanted that opportunity to tell them,” Rundquist said. “I’m looking forward to watching them play next season. They better guard!”

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