With a resume that boasts two Sac Joaquin Section Championships, 16 Central California Conference Championships – 14 of which were won in consecutive years – and a Sac Joaquin Section Model Coach award, Mary Krupka stands as one of the most decorated and successful coaches in Turlock High history.
Now, after another dominating season, the longtime Bulldog coach has one more accolade to add to her collection after being named the National Federation State High School Association’s Coach of the Year for girls golf.
“It was a nice surprise. I’m honored that they would pick me,” Krupka said. “All the girls I’ve coached, from year one to 14, is who got me this award.”
Although she’s one of only 28 recipients of the NFHS Coach of the Year award, Krupka admits she didn’t know it existed before she received an email from Turlock High Athletic Director Mike Brown detailing her achievement.
“Some schools are lucky to have a golf team. We usually always have 15 to 16 kids on the golf team,” Brown said. “She really gets involved with the girls.”
Krupka began her coaching career at her alma matter of Edison High in Huntington Beach before moving to Turlock where she attended California State University, Stanislaus and began working at Turlock High.
A multi-sport collegiate athlete with experience playing basketball and tennis, Krupka displayed the same king of versatility as a coach as she helped lead basketball, tennis, softball and volleyball teams for the Bulldogs. However, it wasn’t until she took over the girls golf program from Frank Cusenza 14 years ago that Krupka truly found her niche.
“Coaching golf is different than all the other sports on campus. In many ways it’s a one-on-one coaching relationship with each player, individually, and then it’s a big relationship with the team,” Krupka said.
Since taking over the girls golf program Krupka’s teams have been unstoppable in league, a feat that brings Krupka more joy than any individual award.
“Winning league each year, I consider that the highlight of my career,” Krupka said. “I like those (awards) but I’d rather win league every year.”
Now, with Turlock’s exit from the CCC and its entry into the Central California Athletic League, Krupka is preparing to introduce her girls golf program to a new crop of opponents and extend both her and Turlock High’s legacy of dominance on the golf course.
“It was great to say goodbye to all the Merced and Atwater schools by beating all of them,” Krupka said with a laugh.
“But I’m excited about the new challenge,” she added. “We’re going to show people what this program is about. We haven’t won 14 championships to walk out there next year and go last in league. We want to finish number one.”