Watertown, NY – The Watertown Rapids have proven to provide a strong opportunity for coaches to grow their careers outside of the summer. Rapids’ 2019 Field Manager Mike Wood recently took on the role of Assistant Coach at Northwest Florida State College, an NJCAA Division I program that won the Junior College World Series in 2015. Due to Wood’s recent appointment, the Rapids will bring on a new Field Manager for the 2020 season.
Rapids’ coaches continue to advance their careers following their stints in Watertown. From the 2018 staff, David Anderson enters his second year as Pitching Coach at Emory University and also coached the Fayetteville SwampDogs of the Coastal Plain League this past summer. Nick Ascue coached alongside Anderson in Fayetteville and recently joined Bowling Green State University’s coaching staff as an Assistant Coach. Caleb Abney continues his work as Hitting Coach in the Minnesota Twins organization in the Gulf Coast League.
From Wood’s staff this summer, Sean Stacy was with the Rapids for the first half of the season before becoming an Assistant Coach at Northeast Texas Community College. Hunter Thomas has begun his second year as a Graduate Assistant Coach at West Virginia Wesleyan University.
“It’s awesome to watch these guys advance their careers,” Rapids General Manager Brandon Noble said. “You spend a lot of time with all of the coaches from recruiting throughout the off-season and planning, to each day during the summer, so our organization enjoys seeing the success of each coach after they leave Watertown.”
Wood learned a lot as a first-year head coach this summer and feels strongly about the opportunity he earned in Watertown. “Getting the chance to coach a great group of talented players definitely helped me prepare as a coach before coming down to the great talent that’s at Northwest Florida State,” Wood said. In addition to coaching the Rapids this summer, Wood and Thomas managed the West All-Stars in the PGCBL All-Star Game in Saugerties.
Coming into the 2019 season, Wood had previously played in Watertown for the Jefferson Community College Cannoneers in 2014 and 2015. With his previous experience in Watertown, Wood looked forward to the opportunity to manage the Rapids and gain valuable experience that he believe exceeded expectations. “Watertown is a very supportive community that is going to do everything in their power to make the Rapids a success. With professional management within the PGCBL and all the perks of playing in Watertown, it makes a perfect fit for any student-athlete trying to better themselves before returning to their respective schools in the fall, and the same goes for coaches looking to grow their career,” Wood said.
As Wood and his Raiders baseball team prepare for their 2020 season, Wood is most excited about the level of competition in Florida. “I am excited about the opportunity because of their storied success on the baseball field and the chance to compete in the nationally recognized panhandle conference.”
“We really couldn’t have asked for better coaches over the first two seasons,” Noble added. “Our coaches have represented our organization exceptionally on the field and have gone above and beyond in the community. We’re proud of the platform we’re building not only for these highly talented players to grow, but also our coaches and staff members.”
The Rapids have begun recruiting for the 2020 season and continue to develop relationships with colleges around the country. The Rapids have also hired a new Field Manager and will make an announcement via press release shortly.
The Rapids are currently seeking host families for the 2020 season. Please follow the link for more information, https://www.watertown-rapids.com/host-family.