Buffalo Grove's Peterson, Schaumburg's Heisler step down
A pair of long-standing MSL boys basketball coaches that met in the conference title game in 2019 both submitted their resignations Monday.
Buffalo Grove coach Keith Peterson, who had been at the helm for 9 seasons, and Schaumburg's Wade Heisler, who guided the Saxons for seven seasons, both stepped down on Monday.
Peterson, who has been coaching for 20 years, said it was an opportunity to do other things.
"It was just time," Peterson said. "Going into this year I was about 85 percent to 90 percent sure this was going to be my last year. At no time did I think I should stick around longer."
Peterson, who teaches social sciences, said that he will remain as the JV volleyball coach. That will give him extra time to have with his wife Julie and their four children.
"I have been lucky to take my kids to practices and stuff," Peterson said. "But they have not had an opportunity to do other things because of my schedule. We have already made winter plans for later this year."
Peterson took over the head coaching reins of the Bison in 2012. His 9-year record was 126-119 and his teams won one MSL East title.
Peterson and the Bison are coming off a season where they advanced to the regional finals against Barrington and finished 14-18.
"It was a very rewarding season," Peterson said. "This group of guys is great to be around. We had more success than most people thought we were going to have. A lot of good things happened."
Peterson said the administration was very supportive of him and his decision.
"They have all been great," Peterson said. "I really want to thank them all for this opportunity."
It is the possibility of new opportunities that has Heisler moving away from coaching.
"It was a tough personal decision," Heisler said. "But there are some career opportunities in our district that I would like to pursue, and I need to finish up some education to be able to do that."
Heisler is looking to take additional graduate-level classes to put himself in a position for a leadership role in education. He said this is where his career path is taking him now.
"I can always go back and coach," Heisler said. "But it is difficult to manage the time to take these classes and run a varsity program at the same time. There are just so many things you can do. Running the basketball program the way I do, putting the passion into it like I do and how much I care about it, I could not cheat that process."
Heisler was head coach of Schaumburg for 7 seasons. The Saxons were 15-13 this season and had Evanston on the ropes in Schaumburg's opening round Class 4A state playoff game before succumbing 58-49.
"I love my players and I love Schaumburg High School," Heisler said. "But it will be great to be around my family. My wife Kiersten and my family have been truly great."
Heisler, who took over from current Schaumburg athletic director Marty Manning in 2014, compiled a 96-92 mark. His Saxons won the MSL West and the MSL title 2019, beating Buffalo Grove in that title game. That team also won a regional title.
"I just want to thank the people at Schaumburg for giving me this opportunity," Heisler said. "From the players, my assistant coaches to the staff and administration. They have all supported the student-athletes on our team."