NEWINGTON – Five years removed from stepping down as the boys basketball coach at Newington High School, Scot Wenzel will find himself back in the saddle at his old stomping grounds this fall.
In a press releases sent out last week, Newington Athletic Director Christopher Meyers announced the reunion with the former coach.
Wenzel served in this role from 2003-2017 before making the decision to step down to be able to spend more time with his family. During his 14 years with Newington, he accumulated a 187-122 record and made the playoffs in 13 of those seasons. His run also included an undefeated regular season in the 2015-16 campaign. Since then, he stepped in as the head coach of Plainville High School from 2020-2022.
“Coach Wenzel brings a commitment to student athletes both on and off the court,” Newington Athletic Director Christopher Meyers said. “He works as a physical education teacher at Plainville High School and has shown a commitment to the academic success of his student athletes in the past, along with ensuring their growth socially, emotionally and physically. While fostering the personal growth of his student athletes he was also able to earn four CCC Championships, have numerous All-State, All-Conference, and Academic All-Conference players, and make it to the CIAC Class L State Semifinals in 2016.”
Wenzel said he never lost the desire to coach, the timing just wasn’t right in 2017. He wanted to be able to watch his kids play as they got older. However, five years later he said coming back to Newington was something he knew he wanted to do upon finding out the position had become available.
“Newington is a great place and I’ve loved coaching there,” Wenzel said. “We’ve always had tough kids that worked hard, were very coachable and we built a strong tradition over there. After being away from it for a few years you start to realize how much love you have for it. We were pretty special in the time when I was [at Newington]. From all our wins and conference championships but was more about the relationships that I built with a lot of the kids throughout those years and a lot of the relationships that I still have with them. It was a very family-oriented program.”
Despite his rapport with the administration, Wenzel still went through the full interview process and is excited to be back. Meyers shed some light on the decision from the school last week.
“Through the interview process, Coach Wenzel emphasized his dedication to education and basketball, which set him apart as a leader of our education-based basketball program,” Meyers said. “We are excited to watch Coach Wenzel continue his history of success at Newington High School.”
In his return, Wenzel is hoping to use the toughness he saw in his previous stint as coach to his advantage once again.
“There were some games that we went into when we maybe didn’t have as much talent as the other team, but there were very few times when we went into a game and we weren’t as tough or tougher than the opponent,” Wenzel said.
He also hopes to continue the family atmosphere he always experienced at Newington where the alumni come back and continue to be a part of the program and help.
Ramping up for the season will get underway “as soon as possible,” according to Wenzel. He hopes to meet with the team and get training underway early into the fall season.