GIRLS BASKETBALL

Marian names Murray as girls basketball coach

2013-08-12T19:45:00Z 2014-08-28T17:04:20Z Marian names Murray as girls basketball coachMike Nieto mike.nieto@nwi.com, (219) 933-3232 nwitimes.com
August 12, 2013 7:45 pm  • 

Dan Murray has not met his players yet, but he knows he has a great group who knows how to win.

Murray was named Marian Catholic's girls basketball coach Monday afternoon. He inherits several returners from the team that won the Class 4A state title.

Murray was the coach at Lisle the past three seasons.

"That is a challenge because we had no summer together," Murray said. "I will have to do a little homework and see what works and I am not going to try and change things."

And why?

Marian is one of the top girls programs in the state and has won 13 straight regional titles.

Marian has averaged 28 victories per year since 2001-2002 when it finished second in Class AA.

The Spartans also have a third- and fourth-place finish at state.

Former coach Annie Byrne was 216-51 in eight years and is the program's winningest coach. She resigned July 19 for another employment opportunity.

"I am honored to be the coach at Marian," Murray said. "It is a great program and I want to continue that tradition."

Murray has some pretty good credentials too.

At Lisle, he was 61-27 in three years and his Lions team was undefeated in Interstate Eight Conference play last year. He also was successful at Immaculate Conception, winning four regional titles and having three 20-win seasons in 10 years.

His 2009-2010 team was 29-4 and he left the Elmhurst Catholic school as the program's all-time wins leader.

The Spartans were 33-1 last year and finished with a 20-game winning streak. They did not lose in 2013.

Marian returns DePaul recruit Ashton Millender, guards Teniya Page and Kauai Bradley, who hit a buzzer-beater to give Marian a 48-47 win over Rolling Meadows for the state title.

Millender also hit a buzzer-beating 3 to give Marian a 54-52 win over Marist in the Mother McAuley Sectional final.

Marian Catholic Principal Sr. Kathleen Anne Tait said in a news release the school is excited to have someone of Murray's caliber to carry on the program's tradition.

"Dan's winning experience in other programs, commitment to Catholic education, and insights into assuming the reins of a state-caliber program a few months prior to the season, made him a great match for Marian Catholic," she said.

"He brings passion for the game and a strong commitment to continued development of the program."

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