SALINEVILLE, OH- In an emotional and compelling episode of the YSN podcast “Southern Local Girls Basketball Coach’s Corner,” host DJ Yokley sat down with the renowned and occasionally polarizing local basketball coach, Mike Skrinjar.
Coach Skrinjar shared his fervent passion for the game and his dedication to his team’s success, describing the intensity that has become his coaching hallmark. He recounted the profound experiences he’s had with his senior players, particularly delving into the struggles that stoke his drive to mentor and inspire.
Mike is no stranger to the spotlight in his hometown, acknowledging the weight of community expectations that come with the job. Yet, he remains undeterred, focusing on the positive impact he can have on his athletes’ lives. In a moving segment, he spoke about the tragic loss of a former player, using the sorrow as motivation to pour his heart into the game and life itself.
One of the spotlight stories Yokley and Skrinjar tackled was that of Ashley Shrodes, a player whose tenacity and skill on the basketball court have largely gone unnoticed. Despite the odds, Ashley’s exceptional scoring and defensive prowesses raised the bar for high school athletes. Her persistence and unparalleled work ethic, often translating to feats in scoring and steals, have solidified her status as an ultimate competitor.
Over the past six years, Coach Skrinjar has overseen and contributed to the profound growth of the Southern Local girls’ basketball program. Challenges have been transformed into lessons in character building and resilience. Yokley lauded Skrinjar’s distinctive coaching techniques, borne from his diverse background as an athlete and educator.
Skrinjar’s philosophy extends beyond the court, as he draws inspiration from figures like Dennis Rodman, advocating for authenticity and the pursuit of greatness in everyone. His coaching quirks, ranging from his sartorial choices to his ritual collection of field dirt, capture the essence of his unique approach.
As the conversation wound down, there was a mutual expression of respect between Coach Skrinjar and host DJ Yokley, closing out an episode that put a spotlight on the local heroes of basketball and the vibrant culture surrounding them.
The podcast ended with both men acknowledging the impact that uplifting figures like Coach Skrinjar have on young athletes, and how their mentorship extends beyond sport, shaping lives for the better in Southern Local and beyond.