Butler County and basketball run deep with new David City girls basketball coach Nathan Wall.
What started as a hobby grew into a self-described obsession for Wall, the son of longtime coach Ray Wall.
“I grew up in a gym,” Wall said. [My dad] brought me with him to practice, scouting, and I was a student manager on his team’s starting in first grade all the way until I started playing for him.”
While playing under his dad Wall was a starter and letter winner at East Butler and was a part of the only Tiger teams to make the State tournament in 2000 and 2001. They were eliminated by eventual champions both years, Humboldt/Table Rock-Steinaur in 2000 and Laurel-Concord in 2001.
After his playing career was finished Wall set out to create his own coaching legacy while enrolling in college. He was assistant boys coach at Pender high school while he earned his degree in Elementary Education with an endorsement in coaching at Wayne State.
Wall learned a lot from his dad, but he says their coaching styles are different, other than these three principles. 1. Be a student of the game. 2. Treat kids right and fairly. 3. You better outwork people to have success.
After graduating in 2006, Wall became the Wayne high school girl’s assistant coach before taking over the head coaching position in 2008. In five seasons he built a 76-50 record. He coached teams to two different district finals and his 2010-11 squad won a school record 17 wins.
A brief stint as the boys coach at Meridian led him to David City where Wall is the Elementary Title I teacher at the Bellwood Attendance Center.
Wall is married to fellow East Butler graduate Karla (Rezac) Wall. The two moved back to Butler County to be close to family as they raise their son Paxton who will turn 3 on New Year’s Eve. Wall counts on his family’s patience as he carries out his coaching career.
“Luckily, I have a very supportive wife. Between her, me, and our son, we are a basketball family,” Wall said.
Wall will be assisted on the bench by Jessica Boyle whom Wall coached against during her playing career at Norfolk Catholic. Boyle will be entering her third year as an assistant coach for the Scouts.
Emily Maresh will also be on Wall’s staff. Maresh recently completed her first season as the head volleyball coach for the Scouts.
“She did an outstanding job as the head volleyball coach this year and I learned a lot from watching her coach volleyball this fall,” Wall said of Maresh.
The Scouts lost just one player to graduation last season, leaving Wall optimistic of the upcoming season.
“I believe that we can accomplish a lot this season,” Wall said. “I hope to have a team on the floor that is going to practice and compete hard. I also hope to have a team that is going to stay together when faced with adversity. If we can do those three things, we will have the ability to be in every single ballgame.”
The Scouts began fall practice on Monday in preparation of the season that begins on Dec. 4 against Centennial in Utica.
“I feel like we can have some versatile lineups that can allow us to play fast, slow, short or big. We had a really good summer. We have the ability to make some noise this season” Wall said.