Interim baseball coach named
Published 8:48 am Thursday, January 6, 2022
By Brian Pitts
If Joey Anderson’s baseball coaching career at Davie becomes half of what he was as a player, it’ll be quite a ride for War Eagle fans.
Anderson, who was named the interim varsity coach after Bradley Rudisill resigned in the fall, put together a legendary career at UNC Charlotte.
After the Charlotte native graduated from Independence High in 1992, he was an instant sensation for the 49ers, starting in center field as a 1993 freshman and making Freshman All-American Honorable Mention that year. He was a two-time all-conference player. He was an All-American as a senior. His No. 5 jersey was retired in 1999.
Anderson is among just eight .400 hitters in Charlotte history, having hit .401 in 1996. In the 49ers’ single-season record book, he’s third in on-base percentage (.511 in 1996), fourth in triples (eight in 1996) and fifth in triples (seven in 1993) and slugging percentage (.707 in 1996).
Anderson still holds two career records – 875 at-bats and 229 total games played. In other career rankings, he’s second in triples (24), third in hits (279), fourth in total bases (449), tied for sixth in stolen bases (69) and eighth in RBIs (161).
More than two decades after his playing days ended, Anderson got into education, getting hired as the AID teacher at South Davie Middle in 2018. He coached Davie’s JV during Rudisill’s three-year tenure as the varsity coach. On Dec. 17, Anderson was named the interim varsity coach.
Rudisill’s first year in 2019 was spectacular as the War Eagles went 22-4, won the conference championship with a 9-1 mark and reached the third round of the 4-A playoffs. (The record was officially 16-10 as Davie had to forfeit six games.)
The 2020 season was all but wiped out by COVID-19, with Davie winning two of five games before the bulk of the season was canceled in mid-March.
The 2021 season was shortened in a condensed sports calender, and Davie struggled, going 5-8 overall and 5-5 in the league to finish fourth out of six teams.
It’s tough to project anything great from Anderson’s 2022 team. Nine seniors graduated last year (Josh Westmoreland, Zach Rodgers, Beaven Arey, Chase Robertson, Reed Cunningham, Blake Little, Jack Reynolds, Justin Collins and Logan Allen), East Forsyth looks utterly loaded and Davie will likely be underdogs against Reagan and West Forsyth as well.
The War Eagles will not be devoid of talent, but most of their talent is young.
“We’re going to be young and the CPC is going to be strong,” Anderson, 47, said. “It’s hard to have an off year in the CPC. But I’ve seen very, very high promise in the boys we have coming out so far. I mean, I think we have a very, very strong freshman class and a good set of juniors. If I get all my seniors healthy, we’re going to compete and we’re going to surprise some people. I think we’ll be OK.”