McKinleyville basketball welcomes back two old friends

Ray Hamill/ – After a successful few years at Eureka High, Mike Harvey will join the McKinleyville boys program as an assistant coach.

The coaching at McKinleyville High School just got a boost.

Boys basketball head coach Cindy Semore Clancy announced this week that longtime local coach Mike Harvey and recent Mack player Tyler Pelascini will join her staff for next season.

Harvey has been coaching in the area for almost four decades and most recently enjoyed a very successful run in charge of the Eureka girls program, while Pelascini is a former Panthers basketball and baseball player who graduated the school in 2018.

Pelascini is currently finishing up his undergraduate degree at Purdue University where has has been working as team manager with the men’s basketball program and longtime coach Matt Painter.

And Semore Clancy says she is excited about the two new additions.

“Having two quality coaches such as Mike Harvey and Tyler Pelascini joining our coaching staff is such a blessing for the players in our program,” she said. “Mike has been coaching our youth for 37 years and brings in his enthusiasm and plethora of knowledge that can only be gained from long-term experience. 

“Although young, Tyler has been preparing most of his life to be a coach. His mastery of the game is well beyond his years and his time working with coach Matt Painter at Purdue has more than prepared him to take on the challenge of working with our high school players.”

Harvey spent the last four seasons coaching the Eureka girls after several years coaching the Mack boys JV team, including Pelascini, who was a two-time team MVP under Harvey.

Submitted photo – Tyler Pelascini

During his time with the Loggers, Harvey had a record of 69-32, which was the best winning percentage of any basketball coach at Eureka, boys or girls, in the past 20 years.

He also guided the team to two Dick Niclai championships and a first outright Big 5 championship in 18 years.

And he says he is looking forward to reuniting with his former player, who eventually wants to pursue a college coaching career and is coming back to McKinleyville to complete his student teaching before getting his master’s degree.

“Tyler is talented and driven to succeed in whatever he does,” Harvey said. “His knowledge of the game, communication skills and coaching prowess is extraordinary.”

Pelascini’s former baseball coach at Mack High, Scott St. John, also believes he has what it takes to succeed as a coach.

“He will be an amazing coach for Mack High basketball this coming season and wherever life takes him,” St. John said. “With the addition of coach Harvey and coach Pelascini, Mack High basketball is in great hands.”

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