Happy Valley hires Peters to coach softball
Published 8:49 am Thursday, July 23, 2015
An Elizabethton graduate will take the helm of the Happy Valley softball program, as Bonnie Peters was announced as the school’s new coach on Wednesday morning. She will also serve as a guidance counselor at the school.
“It’s great, and I am excited about it,” Peters said. “This is something that I always wanted to do, and I think it is a great opportunity.”
The crosstown rivalry with Elizabethton also will get another boost, as Peters was the coach at T.A. Dugger when the current freshman and sophomore class at Elizabethton attended the school.
Peters left TAD after the 2014 season. She also has coached at Gray and Ridgeview middle schools. During her six years at those three schools, Peters amassed a 147-14 record while racking up three conference championships and three runner-up finishes.
While Peters hasn’t had experience coaching the high school level, it is a step that she has been looking to take her entire career.
“I’ve always wanted to coach high school, but having a small child, it took a lot of commitment and I knew that if I was going to do it, I was going to put 100 percent into it,” Peters said. “Now that she is older, I think it’s a great time to go to the next step.”
And Happy Valley couldn’t be more excited to have her.
“I am looking forward to working with her, and I think that she is going to be a great addition to our program,” Happy Valley Athletic Director Matt Estep said. “She has a great attitude and a great background in softball.
“I think we have the potential to do some really good things this year,” he said. “We have a really good team with a really good bunch of kids.”
New Happy Valley principal Bernie Young said that he wanted someone who was rooted in the community and didn’t plan to leave any time soon.
“What really excited me about Bonnie was that she has worked with the younger kids and has done summer ball, and that shows her love of the game,” Young said. “That is the kind of work that proves you are committed to the game and the kids, because you aren’t going to get your name in the paper at that level.”
But there is no doubt that she will have her name in the paper now, as she inherits a team that won 27 games last season and returns all but two players, but the new head coach hasn’t even had time to meet her players yet.
“I am looking exciting to meet them,” Peters said. “I’ve heard great things about the girls and the program and I’m excited about it.”
With so many returning players and a close regional contest against eventual state champion Greeneville to end last season, there is no doubt that a lot will be expected from the Lady Warriors this year.
“I think the expectations are high and we are going to do all we can to get further down the road,” Peters said. “I guess the ultimate goal is winning it all.”