East Newton’s Fields becomes program’s winningest head coach

Kyle Fields won his 85th game as the Patriots' head coach Monday night.
Web Fields Story

GRANBY, Mo. – Kyle Fields is now the winningest head coach in East Newton boys basketball program history.

“When it was announced, it kind of caught me by surprise,” Fields says, “Our Athletic Director mentioned it a couple years ago, and I knew he was keeping track, but I hadn’t thought about it since.”

The Patriots beat Monett 69-42 in their first game at the Neosho Holiday Classic on Monday night, giving Fields his 85th win as head coach at East Newton. Fields is now 85-59 in 5+ seasons as the leader of the program.

The previous record of 84 wins was held by former head coach Mark Branscum.

“It means a lot to me,” Fields says of becoming the program’s winningest coach, “East Newton means a lot to me. It’s a great place, and I’ve really enjoyed my time here. I’ve had a bunch of good teams and good players. A coach is only as good as the players he has, and I’ve been fortunate to have some good kids come through the program.”

Fields is in his second stint as head coach at East Newton.

He coached the Patriots for four seasons from 2012-2016 before coaching at McDonald County for two years. Fields returned to East Newton in 2019, and is now in the second year of his second stint with the Patriots.

“It’s a special place,” Fields says of East Newton, “The people make the place. It’s a welcoming place and everyone is willing to do things to help each other. It makes it easy to relate and it makes it easy to fit in. It’s been a good fit for me.”

This year’s East Newton team is off to a hot start.

With Monday’s win, the Patriots are now 8-1 in their first 9 games and are ranked #10 in the MBCA Class 4 state rankings.

“This is a tight-knit group that has played a lot of basketball together,” Fields says of his 2020-2021 team, “It’s a very intelligent group, one of the smarter groups I’ve had. We have several kids who can score. It’s been a fun group to be around and it’s been fun going to practice every day.”

The Patriots will be back in action on Tuesday night, facing McDonald County at 6:30 PM on day two of the Neosho Holiday Classic.