Shane Stolz, Sports Information Director
WALNUT RIDGE – When the 2017 school year begins at Williams Baptist College, there will be a new Lady Eagles basketball coach strolling the sidelines for the first time in 33 years. Head coach and women’s basketball coaching legend Carol Halford is retiring from the sport after 33 seasons at WBC’s helm and 519 career victories.
“Coaching for 33 years at a great institution like WBC has been a fulfilling experience to say the least. It is about the people, the place we have been, and the memories we made along the way. I am grateful to all the special players that made coaching a pleasure. I want to personally thank Dr. Tom Jones, Coach Jeff Rider and the WBC coaching staff for the support through the years,” Halford said.
Halford will remain at Williams, where she is taking on new responsibilities in academics. She has been named chair of the Division of Professional Studies, and she will continue as chair of the Physical Education Department at WBC.
“The administration has provided an opportunity for me to continue at Williams as a division chair and a department chair, as well as teaching full-time,” Halford said.
During her tenure as head coach, Halford has reached many milestones, including a National Championship in the National Christian College Athletic Association in 1992-93, after finishing as the runner-up in 1991-92. She has coached eight All-Americans (NJCAA, NCCAA, and NAIA) and over 50 all-conference selections. Her win total ranked in the top five of the NAIA among active coaches before her retirement. She has coached hundreds of academic all-conference honorees.
“Coach Halford has done a great job for us over the past 33 years. She has accomplished some outstanding feats in her time. Her impact stretches from student-athletes to her colleagues. I appreciate her contribution to the athletic department, as well as her friendship over the years,” Director of Athletics Jeff Rider said.
Her accolades include being named NCCAA National Coach of the Year in 1993. Halford served as an assistant coach in the 1990 Olympic Festival, and she was named to the NAIA’s Hall of Fame Committee and USA National Basketball Team’s player selection committee.
The Malden, Mo., native’s experiences include being the WBC director of athletics for 17 years. She was named conference Athletic Director of the Year on three separate occasions, twice in the American Midwest Conference (2001 and 2004) and once in the Trans-South Conference (1996).
Before coaching, she was a standout athlete in basketball, softball and golf. She was named all-conference in basketball at Williams (then known as Southern Baptist College) in 1978.
WBC also announced her successor will be longtime assistant coach John Mayberry. Mayberry will take over after serving as her assistant for the past six seasons.