The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

July 31, 2013

Tolson resigns from SWE baseball post

Sports Correspondent

PINETOPS — PINETOPS – Tommy Tolson resigned his post Thursday as the SouthWest Edgecombe Cougars baseball coach and physical education teacher.

Tolson has taken a job at Northern Nash High School as a physical education and sports medicine teacher. He will also be an assistant coach on the football team and the associate head coach for the baseball team.

"I am excited about my new job," Tolson said. "I enjoy coaching football just as much as I do baseball. I was given the chance to coach football again at Northern Nash so I took the job."

Tolson has been in the school system in Edgecombe County for 31 years and hated to leave, but he said he had a fresh start at Northern Nash and couldn't turn it down.

"The bad part about leaving Edgecombe County is, that is where I grew up and have taught and coached my whole career," Tolson said. "I hated to tell my baseball players about me leaving, but it is a decision I made. I prayed about it long and hard."

Tolson was the Cougars head coach for three-years. He had a tough time getting his teams over the hump to become successful in the wins category. His overall record was 10-54 and his team didn't make a playoff appearance during his tenure.

Tolson did some positive things at SWE, but just not in the win-loss aspect. When Tolson took over the program in 2011, he said he was in the process of rebuilding it from scratch. Tolson had just taken over after Bruce Rhodes had stepped down at the end of the 2010 season.

At the beginning of the 2013 season, Tolson said he and his team had to rebuild the program from the ground up and that they had rebuilt the foundation and were working to continue to get better in all phases of the game.

Going into the Easter break, Tolson said his team started out a little shaky, but he expected a lot from his team down the stretch. He felt like the strength of the team was their deep roster, but things didn't end like he had hoped.

That didn't happen like Tolson had hoped they would, because after the break, the Cougars fell off and hit a long losing skid. Tolson and his team lost eight of their last nine games.

As for the Cougars baseball opening, the administration is going to take the hiring process slowly to make sure they have the right fit for the job.

SWE Athletic Director Sandra Langley said there are three coaches, who teach at the school, who are interested in the position.

She said she and principal Marc Whichard will begin taking resumes and will figure out how to go about the hiring process.

She said they aren't going to rush to fill the position, because they have time to find the right fit for the job.