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Munsing rehires Graves as coach

By Journal Sports Staff

MUNISING – Munising High School has named its new boys varsity basketball coach, but the name should be familiar to fans of the Mustangs.

Allen Graves will take over the program this fall after he served in the same position from 2001 until the end of the 2009-10 season.

He resigned about five years ago due to work commitments at his workplace, Neenah Paper.

Graves, who has more than two decades experience coaching the sport at various levels, moves into the varsity position after the resignation of Lance Johnson in midsummer.

After coaching the Mustangs for one season to a school-best 21-2 record and Class D district championship, Johnson moved on to Reeths-Puffer High School in Muskegon, a Class A school near his hometown on the western side of the Lower Peninsula.

The search began around the Fourth of July for Johnson’s replacement.

“Coach Graves will bring enthusiasm, dedication and stability to our program,” Munising Schools athletic director Dee Jay Paquette said in a news release. “We are very pleased to have Al back on the bench.”

Graves, a 1981 graduate of Munising High School, was a member of the Mustangs’ 1980 Class C state championship football team. He is also a former member of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Graves coached the Mustangs at a time when their school was one of the smallest in the Class C Mid-Peninsula Conference.

Several years ago after a drop to Class D, Munising joined the Central Upper Peninsula Conference, now the Skyline Central Conference, that includes all Class D schools.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.