Pima Community College is undergoing a couple of major changes in their athletic program. New head coaches have been added to both the men’s basketball and baseball programs.
But they’re keeping things in the family, as both coaches have logged years as assistants on the coaching staffs.
And both are local products.
Roderick Gary, who served as an assistant coach from 1989-1990 and again during the 1998-99 season, is the new basketball head coach. And before that, he spent six years as an assistant coach at Sahuaro High School in Tucson.
Gary, who is the school’s program manager at its Information Center and on its outreach team, played basketball at Cochise College in Douglas, and then went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication at Northern Arizona University.
He inherits a program that went 20-16 last season and finished seventh in the NJCAA D-II tournament. However, he has to find a way to replace his top three scorers: Traverse Peterson, who averaged 17 points a game; Warren Baker, who contributed another 16 points a game; and Jeremy Harden from nearby Tucson High School, who finished his JUCO career averaging 12 points.
But the Aztecs’ new baseball boss has an even bigger job ahead of him.
Jason Hisey will take over a team that went 21-33-1 last season and has been struggling in recent years. The Aztecs went 31-22-1 in 2009 and 35-20 in 2008.
On the plus side, Hisey will have the best part of his pitching staff returning in Matt Pavelich, who was on the mound for 20 games and posted a 5-1 record last season with a 2.32 ERA, and Andrew Humphreys, who pitched in 15 contests and finished with a 3.50 ERA.
Both are local grads. Pavelich is from Tucson and attended Cienega High School in Vail. Humphreys came to Pima from Amphitheater High School in Tucson.
Hisey is no newcomer to the Aztec program. He was the pitching coach and assistant coach from 2006-2008, helping the team reach the conference playoffs in 2006 and 2007.
A pitcher for the University of Arizona from 1987-1991, he also had a stint as a local high school coach, serving as the head baseball coach at Tucson’s Catalina Foothills High School, where he took the Falcons to three state championships and eight regional titles.
He also used the UofA for his college education, earning a master’s degree in Sports Administration and a bachelor’s in Exercise Sport Science.
(Photo: Pima CC Athletics)