Archive for Wednesday, February 27, 2002

Group tabs Williams top coach

February 27, 2002

Roy might be a candidate for national coach of the year honors in college basketball, but another Williams already has the recognition on another level.

Phil Williams, Tonganoxie High School cross country coach, was named 4A State Coach of the Year in early January.

The 28-year THS coach, who was also the coach of the year in 1990, was notified of the honor more than a month ago, but didn't inform anyone.

"I didn't know it was going to be put in the paper," Williams said.

People congratulated him last week after reading about his accomplishments in the Lawrence Journal-World.

The Kansas Cross Country Coaches' Association votes on the accomplishment, although Williams said he didn't think the honor included a plaque.

"It's a low-budget organization," the Chieftain coach said with a chuckle.

Williams, who coached at Belle Plaine near Wichita for two years before coming to Tonganoxie, has had considerable success with the Chieftains.

On the boys' side, THS took second at State in 1989, 1990 and last fall. The Chieftains also won State in 1991, and boys' teams have won six consecutive Kaw Valley League titles.

In 1980, the Tonganoxie girls' team placed fourth, and last year's team took second at the KVL meet.

Williams said he was actually trying to keep the award low-key by not telling anyone.

"I kind of did," Williams said. "It's nice, I guess, to get a little recognition."

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