JWHS Hires Three New Head Coaches
James Wood High School has announced the hiring of new head coaches for the varsity boys’ soccer team, the varsity softball team and the varsity football team. James Wood High School Principal Sam Gross says, “We are excited to fill each of these positions with coaches who not only have a great deal of experience and knowledge about their respective sports, but also model outstanding character and integrity. They each recognize the important life lessons students can learn through participation in athletics as well as the importance of our student-athletes being as committed to their work in the classroom as they are to their athletic pursuits.”
Information about each of the new coaches can be found below.
Ronald Velasquez-Head Boys’ Soccer Coach
Ronald Velasquez has been named the new head coach of James Wood High School’s varsity boys’ soccer team. Velasquez is a 2020 graduate of Millbrook High School where he was a four-year varsity starter for the Pioneers. He went on to receive a scholarship and play soccer for George Mason University where he majored in engineering. Velasquez is currently the head coach of the 2012 Blue Ridge United Blue Team and assists in running camps and clinics with the club in the summer.
James Wood High School Coordinator of Student Activities Brian Sullivan says, “Coach Velasquez brings an energy, charisma and passion for soccer that will fit well leading our boys’ soccer program. His knowledge of the game, character and work ethic stand out. We are excited to watch him work to lead our Colonels boys’ soccer program to new heights. He will be an outstanding addition to our coaching staff and is a coach who leads by example with character, dignity, and humility. We are excited to welcome Coach Velasquez to be part of Colonel Nation.”
Patrick Gibson-Head Softball Coach
The James Wood High School softball team will have a new coach in 2023. Patrick Gibson has been selected to succeed Todd Baker who decided to step down from the head coaching position last summer. Gibson, who served as the assistant softball coach under Baker, also serves as the coach of the 18U Shenandoah Valley Swarm.
James Wood High School Coordinator of Student Activities Brian Sullivan says, “We are excited to welcome Coach Gibson as our next softball coach. Coach Gibson has helped our softball program sustain many years of success as an assistant coach and I am confident he will do an exemplary job leading our softball program beginning this year. Coach Gibson prides himself on building positive relationships with our student-athletes and brings a wealth of knowledge about the game. I look forward to working with Coach Gibson to help sustain the success our softball program has enjoyed.”
Todd Wilson-Head Football Coach
Todd Wilson has been named James Wood High School’s new varsity football coach. Wilson, who teaches history at James Wood, has served as James Wood High School’s offensive line coach for the past four seasons. He will be the 18th head football coach in the school’s history.
Prior to coaching at James Wood, Wilson spent six years an assistant coach at East Hardy High School in Baker, West Virginia. During his time at East Hardy High School, the Cougars amassed a record of 63-14, made six consecutive playoff appearances and finished as the state runner-up twice. The teams Wilson has coached over the past 10 years at East Hardy High School and James Wood High School have enjoyed nine winning seasons.
Wilson graduated from Moorefield High School in Moorefield, West Virginia, and won a state championship as a player there. He earned a history degree from Shepherd University in 2005 and received his post-baccalaureate in education from Marshall University in 2007.
James Wood Coordinator of Student Activities Brian Sullivan adds, “Coach Wilson is a model of consistency, respect and character. We could not be more excited to name him our head football coach. His knowledge of the game is evident and our student-athletes will benefit greatly from his leadership. Coach Wilson prides himself on being a great person, a hard worker and a leader in the classroom and community. I am confident he will instill those core values in our student-athletes.” The James Wood High School football team will open its regular season at home against Warren County High School on August 25.