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Iowa History Daily: September 9 - Pezzetti Leads the Pack

Iowa History Daily: On September 9, 2021, Jerry Pezzetti claimed the title as the winningest high school football coach in Iowa history with his 433rd win. The 20th all-time wins leader nationally, Pezzetti coached at Murray, Melcher-Dallas, Ankeny, and Ankeny Centennial (current co-head coach) over a storied career.

A native of Melcher-Dallas, Iowa, Pezzetti headed to Des Moines to attend Drake University where lettered on the baseball diamond for the Bulldogs. After graduation he headed south to start his gridiron coaching career at Murray High School in 1961 before spending one season coaching his hometown Melcher-Dallas Mustangs.

Accepting a teaching and coaching position at Ankeny High School during the mid-1960s, Pezzetti officially took over as the Hawks head coach in 1969. As head coach at Ankeny from 1969-2013, Pezzetti won 21 conference championships while leading the Hawks to state titles in 1997 and 2012. In 2013, Pezzetti took over as co-head coach at newly founded Ankeny Centennial with his son, Ryan Pezzetti.

To capture Iowa’s winningest coach mark, Pezzetti surpassed Dick Tighe, a longtime coach at both Webster City and Fort Dodge St. Edmond, who coached for 63 seasons and captured 432 wins. Pezzetti, Tighe and Harlan’s Curt Bladt stand as the only coaches in state history to surpass 400 career wins. #IowaOTD #IowaHistoryDaily #IowaHistoryCalendar


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