Sheffield High School’s three new head coaches were approved for hire Monday night at a school board meeting, while Deshler High announced a new baseball coach Monday as well.
At Sheffield, Pervis Key is the new boys basketball coach, Phil Bates will coach baseball and Sara Lindsey will coach volleyball.
Deshler’s new baseball coach is Jared King.
Key was a standout athlete at Courtland High School and played basketball at UNA from 2001-05. He has previously been the Sheffield High School track coach, a middle school basketball coach and been an assistant on the high school varsity football team.
“He knows the kids, he knows the community,” Sheffield principal Joey Burch said of Key. “He’s just an outstanding all-around person.”
Key takes over for Ski Anderson, who led the Bulldogs to the Class 2A state semifinals. The Bulldogs return starters Cedrick Carroll and Dee Hughes but must replace several top contributors from last year’s team.
Under Key's leadership, several Sheffield track athletes competed successfully at the state meet. Burch said it has not been determined exactly what his role with track will be going forward.
Bates comes to Sheffield after previously coaching baseball at Colbert County and Deshler. He is a retired teacher and will work at Sheffield on a contract basis.
“I just think he brings instant credibility,” Burch said of Bates.
Burch noted Sheffield's baseball team didn’t win a lot last year but was generally competitive, and he thinks Bates' old-school approach and sense of discipline will be good for the team.
The team had no seniors this past season and made great progress, Burch said.
“We just think it’s ready to explode,” Burch said.
Sara Lindsey is the new volleyball coach at Sheffield. She is an elementary school teacher in the district, and her previous coaching experience was in Escambia County.
Sheffield has struggled lately in volleyball, and in Escambia County after a couple years Lindsey guided a team that was once having trouble winning into the region tournament.
“In about a year or two they were competing real well. I think she will do the same thing with ours,” Burch said.
At Deshler, King replaces Jason Fuller, who led the Tigers to the first round of the Class 4A playoffs this year with King as an assistant.
A Russellville graduate, King has served as Deshler’s assistant coach for the past six years under Fuller. He helped the Tigers win 25 games in each of the past two seasons, and Deshler won the Class 4A, Area 16 championship this season.
King previously served as assistant baseball coach at Danville for two seasons and at Clements for one season before coming to Deshler in 2010.