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Central Valley finishes on top after taking down Hamilton Heights in GEICO Nationals final.
He's coached 51 seasons, the last 37 as the head girls basketball coach at Detroit Country Day (Beverly Hills, Mich.)
Frank Orlando apparently will coach forever.
The 75-year-old led the Yellowjackets (24-6) to their second straight Class B MHSSA championship, third in four years and the 13th overall under Orlando.
Despite losing 25-points-per-game scorer Destiny Pitts to graduation in June, Detroit Country Day won its final 11 games, including a 64-48 win over Northwest (Jackson) in the final.
Without a big scorer like Pitts — now a freshman at Minnesota — to rely upon, the Yellowjackets used a more balanced approach this season. Jasmine Powell
led the way in the championship win with 19 points, Maddie Novak
and Adrian Folks
each added 13 points and Providence-bound point guard Kaela Webb
pitched in 11 points and seven assists.
The title game triumph upped Orlando's career record to 786-119, a state record for wins. So are the 13 titles. His win total ranks 15th among active coaches in the National Federation of State High School Associations record book.
For his efforts, Orlando has been selected the MaxPreps National Girls Basketball Coach of the Year.
According to a Detroit Free Press
story last year, Orlando had a choice to coach football or girls basketball at Detroit Country Day 37 years ago. He knew a little more about basketball, so he chose the girls.
"It's nice to mentor young ladies," Orlando told the newspaper. "I just keep going, keep coaching."
He doesn't plan to retire any time soon.
"The beauty of high school basketball is every four years is a new set of girls," he said. "One team goes and another comes. It has a life of its own."