190422 Collinsville vs Red Bay 13

Red Bay's coach Richard Maggerise paces in front of the Tiger dugout in the AHSAA Class 2A first round of playoffs. [MATT MCKEAN/TIMESDAILY]

Red Bay baseball coach Richard Maggerise was destined for med school before his career path took a permanent detour.

Two years into his quest to become a doctor, a local high school baseball coach offered him the opportunity to coach, and it changed the course of his future.

“I was a pre-med student studying to be a doctor with my mind made up two years into my basics,” Maggerise said. “Derek Ergle was the Tharptown baseball coach, and he asked me to help and I fell in love with it. I had no intentions of becoming a coach.”

Maggerise said coaching might not be the most lucrative job, the ability to have an influence on young athletes makes it worth it. Maggerise said he started to notice the difference a coach can make in someone’s life when a former player decided he wanted to become a coach because of Maggerise’s influence

Zach Pounders, a junior at the University of North Alabama, is working toward becoming a coach. Maggerise said he still offers guidance to Pounders and calls it “one of his greatest coaching accomplishments.”

“He (Pounders) started baseball his junior year and he never really found a purpose in high school,” Maggerise said. “Now he is going into teaching and coaching at UNA. I may not ever win a championship, but I hope I can make a difference in people’s lives.”

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