High Point University names new baseball coaching staff and Chris Maness(Northwest Guilford HS/Ragsdale HS) joins the HPU Panthers

HIGH POINT, N.C. — High Point University baseball head coach Joey Hammond announced the rest of his staff yesterday/Wednesday afternoon…

Miles Miller and Mickey Williard join HPU as assistant coaches while Chris Maness(Northwest Guilford HS/Ragsdale HS) comes on as the volunteer assistant coach. Miller is slated to take over as the Panthers’ pitching coach.

Miller comes to HPU after spending the last four seasons with Towson, serving as the Tigers’ associate head coach for the last three years. In 2021, Miller’s staff set a Towson program record with 419 strikeouts and helped the Tigers earn a CAA Tournament appearance for the first time since 2013. Towson reliever Kody Reeser had a 2.02 ERA and 4.28 strikeout-to-walk ratio while becoming the Tigers’ first All-CAA pitcher since the 2012 season. Miller also served as Towson’s interim head coach during the COVID-19-shortened season in 2020 and led the Tigers to a 7-8 record, including two wins over HPU at Williard Stadium. Previous stops for Miller include Purdue, Butler, Philadelphia, and Albertus Magnus.

“I am beyond thrilled to have coach Miller lead his pitching staff for years to come,” Hammond had to say. “Miles brings elite communication skills as well as an ability to adapt his teaching style to meet the pitchers’ needs. Coach Miller’s connections and experience with recruiting will be a great asset for our program. We welcome Miles, his wife Laurie, and son Maddox to the Panther family.”

Williard returns to the college ranks after most recently serving as the head coach of the Coastal Plains League’s High Point-Thomasville HiToms in 2020. Williard led the HiToms to their seventh division title in the modern CPL era with a 24-7 record and coached a total of 16 ACC baseball players, including four that were ranked in the Top 150 Prospects by D1 Baseball. Prior to leading the HiToms, Williard was a volunteer assistant coach at Towson for three years where he worked primarily with the infielders and served as the team’s first base coach. The Tigers ranked in the top three in double plays turned in each of his final two seasons at Towson and saw the number of errors committed decrease sharply. No stranger to coach Hammond, Williard played under Hammond for two years at Westchester Country Day, where he also went on to serve as head coach for three years directly before joining Towson.

“I have been fortunate to know Mickey since his junior year in high school,” Hammond said of his former pupil. “It was evident from an early age that he was born to coach. Coach Williard brings an attention to detail and commitment to the development process that will be a cornerstone for our program. He is a tireless worker that has deep roots to the program and a passion to see it excel. We welcome Mickey and his fiancĂ© Leah to the Panther family.”

Maness comes to High Point after serving as the head coach for Northwest Guilford High School for the last two seasons. He got the Vikings off to a 3-3 start in the 2020 season before the COVID-19 Pandemic prematurely ended it and then led the team to a 13-4 record in 2021 and a trip to the NCHSAA 4A Quarterfinals. Maness also served as an assistant coach at Ragsdale High School and as the head coach at Northwest Guilford and Jamestown Middle Schools. Maness pitched for four years at Elon and is tied for the third-most appearances (88) and has the second-most saves (21) in Phoenix baseball history. He was selected in the 28th round of the 1998 MLB Draft by the Philadelphia Phillies and played 27 games in the minors that season before making 34 appearances for the Independent League Chillicothe Paints in 1999.

“Chris Maness brings a unique blend of experience in this game from coaching at the youth and high school level to playing at the professional level. Chris’s energy is infectious and his toughness and experience as a pro pitcher will be a great resource for our players as they strive to reach their highest potential. We welcome Chris, his wife Jusmar, his daughter Carley, and son Ryan to the Panther family.”