By Marcus Traxler
The Daily Republic
MITCHELL, SD — Mitchell High School baseball coach Luke Norden was recognized as the South Dakota High School Baseball Association’s Class A Spring Season Coach of the Year on Wednesday.
The award is determined by the state’s Class A coaches. Norden completed his 18th season as an MHS baseball coach, leading a program that became consistent at the top of the state’s baseball hierarchy in the spring and in summer.
The award comes after the Kernels finished 18-8 in the high school campaign, earned a top-four seed in the Class A playoff pool, then knocked out No. 1 seed Sioux Falls Roosevelt. ° 1, 5-4 in the state semifinals to prepare. a meeting with Sioux Falls Lincoln in the championship game, which the Patriots won 6-1.
This is Mitchell’s second runner-up finish in Class A in the past four seasons.
Norden won Class A Coach of the Year for the first time since 2006, when the Kernels were state high school champions.
Since 2013, MHS baseball teams have been 150-85 (.638 winning percentage) under Norden in the spring. Combined with Mitchell’s Legion teams at this time, Mitchell baseball has a record of 397-265, with a winning percentage of nearly .600 (not including the current 2022 Legion season).
A Colorado native who played baseball at Dakota Wesleyan, Norden has been Mitchell’s baseball coach since 2004, when he started coaching Mitchell High School’s spring team. In 2007, he took over as head coach of the Legion from Mitchell Post 18, moving to assistant coach and swapping roles with Kent Van Overschelde.
Norden, who is a teacher in the Mitchell School District at Gertie Belle Rogers Elementary School, has also served as the Mitchell Baseball Association’s director of operations since 2013, coordinating the four-team ages 13 and up programs, arranging schedules and trips and lining. the referees.
In Class A, Roosevelt’s Ben Irsfeld was the season’s Player of the Year, while Dell Rapids’ Danny Miller was Class B Coach of the Year, with Madison’s Aspen Dahl named Class B Player of the year. Mitchell’s Jake Helleloid was among the finalists for Class A Player of the Year.