Former Winder-Barrow High School fast-pitch softball coach LeAnne Mitchell wanted a smooth transition when she announced she was stepping down as the Lady Doggs head coach recently.
It appears Mitchell will get her wish.
Assistant Monty McClure has been named the new WBHS softball coach and he has already started making plans for the 2010 season, which begins in just a few weeks.
Mitchell stepped down for career reasons, as she wants to pursue an assistant principal position and said she felt good about her group of assistants in the program. McClure, a former head coach at Excel Christian Academy in Cartersville already knows the players in the WBHS program.
“The transition being a smooth one will be an ideal thing,” McClure told the Barrow Journal Sunday night. “We’ve had 28 players out for voluntary summer workouts. That was something Coach Mitchell had developed. The girls are eager for the season. We are trying to set a high standard for our program. This change should go very smooth.”
McClure said he would be his stamp on the program in certain ways but noted he and Mitchell approach the sport similar.
“We had many of the same beliefs,” McClure said. “Her expectations were high. I may have a few different strategies, but nothing big will change.”
The Lady Bulldoggs have been working since school has been out and McClure said the summer program has been successful to this point.
The team will have an off week during July 4, in accordance with Georgia High School Association rules, and then have another week off before going full speed the rest of the way.
McClure said he was thankful for the opporunity to lead the program and to Mitchell, WBHS athletic director Justin Grant and WBHS principal Al Darby for the chance they have given him.
In other local coaching news, Joey Alfonso is the new volleyball coach at Apalachee High School, taking over for Michael Parks.
Haley Whitley will be the new cheerleading coach at AHS.
At Westside Middle School, Dustin Davis will direct the football program, taking over for Paul DeFoor, who is pursuing his specialist degree in educational leadership. Davis, who has been with the program for the last four years, was the team’s line coach last season.
DeFoor recently received an award from the Barrow County Retired Teachers Association to help fund his ongoing education endeavors.