Mike Dooney is moving closer to home.
Plainview Public Schools approved the hiring of Dooney as the new head coach of the girls basketball and boys golf teams during Monday’s school boarding meeting. He succeeds Andy Bloodworth who resigned in May to accept a job at Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD (Texas).
“I believe that he is young and energetic, and has kind of the basketball system that is up-tempo to best suit our girls,” Plainview High School athletic director David Gilliam said.
This job marks the closest that Dooney, 32, will live to his family in Durant since 2010.
At the time, he was working on his master’s degree while also serving as a graduate assistant on the staff of the Southeastern Oklahoma State University women’s basketball team.
Dooney comes to Plainview after spending last season as an assistant basketball coach at Berryhill, but he has six years of head coaching experience at the high school level: three years at Idabel, two at Stilwell and one at Navajo.
“I’m really excited about this opportunity,” he said. “When I was interviewing here, I felt right at ease. It felt like the transition will be easy because their philosophies line up with mine. I couldn’t be more excited.”
Dooney comes to Plainview at a high point for the girls basketball and boys golf teams. The Lady Indians qualified for the state tournament in 5-on-5 girls basketball for the first time in program history in March. The boys golf team won three consecutive state titles from 2013 to 2015 and finished as the state runner-up in Class 4A in May.
“Anytime you have success, you know that the kids are going to work hard,” he said.
Dooney has a tough task ahead of him as Plainview has to replace five seniors, including four starters, but he believes the Lady Indians are up for the task.
Dooney put together back-to-back winning seasons in his first two seasons at Stilwell after it had not had a winning record in nearly a decade, and at Idabel, compiled a winning record in his first season after the Warriors had only four wins the season prior to his arrival.
Dooney has already got to see Plainview in action.
The Lady Indians traveled to Tulsa this week for a team camp summer tournament at Oral Roberts University where they finished with a 6-3 record.
“We played a pretty good schedule,” he said. “We beat a couple of really good teams. The teams that beat us should make a run at the state tournament this upcoming year. I was really happy with the results that I saw at ORU.”
Expect Plainview to play at a brisk pace with Dooney at the helm.
“I believe in a lot of possessions in a game,” he said. “I want us to get up and down the court. I want to play hard defensively but want to play out in front. I’m shooting for at least 60 possessions in a game. I want for us to try to get up to 80 points in a game. The more we get up there, the better shot we have at winning the game.”
Although Dooney has experience coaching high school basketball, this will mark the first time that he will coach golf.