High School Sports

A quick search to find the new Long Beach baseball coach lands a proven winner

The search to find the new Long Beach High School baseball coach didn’t take long and the program has landed a proven winner on the Class 6A level.

Long Beach announced Wednesday that it has hired Warren Central head coach Conner Douglas to take over the Bearcats’ baseball program.

Douglas spent the last seven seasons as the head coach at Warren Central, compiling a record of 142-66 and winning a pair of region championships. The Vikings reached the playoffs in each of his seasons as head coach.

According to a press release, Douglas was one of 26 applicants for the position.

Shane Rutledge stepped down on April 9 to become the transportation director for the Long Beach School District.

Douglas, a native of Clarksdale, was the Vicksburg Post Coach of the Year in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

“He is a classic act and he will be welcomed in the Long Beach community,” Long Beach superintendent Jay Smith said in a press release. “His experience and love for coaching kids will be appreciated by myself, our school administration and our school board. He has been given complete control of the Bearcat baseball program, grades 7-12. It was my job to hire a coach, it is now his job to coach and I have zero interest in telling him how to do it.”

Douglas played college baseball at Northwest Mississippi Community College and Mississippi College. He worked as an assistant at Warren Central prior to his promotion in 2012.

Long Beach is coming off a 10-17 season, but Douglas should have plenty of young talent to work with.

Rutledge served as the head coach at Long Beach since 2013.

Patrick Magee is a sports writer who has covered South Mississippi for much of the last two decades. From Southern Miss to high schools, he stays on top of it all.