Kelowna Falcons Name New Head Coach
Kelowna, BC: The Kelowna Falcons are pleased to announce that the ninth head coach in franchise history is Geoff White.
Following a successful 2012 campaign Al Cantwell informed the club that he would not be returning in 2013, so that he could concentrate more on his young family in Louisiana. Cantwell has two kids, of three and a one year old.
White is natural choice for the Falcons as a Kelowna native and former pitcher. Over the past five years White created and has developed the Okanagan College (OC) baseball program from scratch as the head coach. He has led the Coyotes to back to back Canadian College Baseball Conference (CCBC) West Division titles (2009-2010). White has had 11 players named to the CCBC All Conference team since the launch of the program in 2008.
In 2005 White took over as the head coach of the Falcons part way through the season after Brian Hoop was released of his duties. His promotion was just a couple of months after his graduation of Jamestown College (North Dakota). He didn't return in 2006 as he had signed a professional contract with Edmonton of the Northern League.
"It's great, I'm definitely excited about the opportunity of being back with the Falcons," says White. "We're looking forward to a challenging year and having some success."
White holds a degree in Education from Jamestown College (2005). As a pitcher he had tremendous success that saw him set numerous college season and career records. He was a five time All Conference selection, an All Region Selection (NAIA-III), and an All American (NAIA) in 2005. He was a member of the most successful graduating class in Jamestown College history posting a record of 115-41. White went on to lead Edmonton in innings pitched in 2006, and in 2007 signed an extension.
During the summers, White has also been a part of Baseball BC over a number of years. He coached the U21 Team BC to Silver at the 2009 Canadian National Championships; he has also been involved with the U17 Selects program, Pacific Northwest Championships and is currently an evaluator and facilitator for NCCP/Baseball BC Coaching certification program.
"I think it's a nice fit," says Falcons General Manager Mark Nonis. "Geoff certainly has the credentials with what he has done with the OC program. Not too often does a baseball mind like Geoff's come out of Kelowna and we are lucky to have him in our own backyard."
Nonis went onto say, "Yes it is disappointing losing Al, but I have always told him family comes first and I completely understand his difficult decision to step down. He has a beautiful young family and I know it's tough on him and his wife over the last two summers being so far away."
Joining White in Falcons blue is his current Assistant Coach at OC Lyall Foran.
He joined the OC at the beginning of last season off a recent posting as the head coach of the Medicine Hat Moose Monarchs American Legion program. He was also recently a graduate assistant at his Alma Mater Norfolk State University.
Drafted by the Atlanta Braves Foran had an outstanding playing career that saw injury sideline him and ultimately end his playing days. A stand out in the PBL he went to Western Nebraska Junior College where he was an All Conference catcher. After two standout years he transferred to Division Two powerhouse Tusculum College (TC) in Tennessee. It was during his days at TC that a shoulder injury occurred and slowed his career. He would play one more year as he transferred to Division One Norfolk State.
The Falcons new coaching staff will see their first action when the club travels to Victoria for their season opener on June 5, 2013 against the newly formed Harbourcats.
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