OSKALOOSA — While the Statesmen baseball team is currently having one of its best campaigns in recent history on the diamond, two former players are enjoying great triumphs serving as coaches.
Chad Hebert, who played for William Penn in 2002, currently coaches at Sam Houston High School in Lake Charles, La. and has the Broncos ranked No. 1 in the nation in Collegiate Baseball’s poll. The team is led by 13 seniors, including eight who have committed to play collegiately (six NCAA D-1 players).
Hebert helped the Statesmen to a 40-14 record in 2002.
“Being No. 1 in the nation is truly a humbling experience,” Hebert said. “My time under Coach (Mike) Laird affected my life in a way that I could never repay him. He has been one of the driving forces in my coaching career and has molded my style of coaching. He taught me humility in success; our players understand these rankings are an honor, but ultimately it is someone else’s opinion of our team. We talk as a team and hope our community remembers us for our character, rather than our win-loss record.”
Petie Montero has taken his skills even higher, recently being promoted by the Los Angeles Dodgers’ organization to become the Bench Coach for the Double-A Tulsa Drillers. Prior to joining the organization in 2017, he was a firefighter in the LA area. Montero helped the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes to the Advanced-A California League title last season.
As a Statesmen (2006 and 2007 seasons), Montero helped William Penn to a 57-39 record, including a Midwest Collegiate Conference title and a Region VII Tournament appearance in 2006.
“Both of these players were extremely-focused leaders of their respective teams,” Laird said. “I am not surprised at all to see them being successful as coaches. They both brought a lot to the William Penn baseball program.”