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Thompson named new PCHS football coach

Photo Provided Larry Thompson was named the 13th head football coach in Parkersburg Catholic football history. Thompson is a 2007 graduate of Massaponax High School in Virginia and started his head coaching career at Mount View High School in 2014 after graduating from Concord University the year before. After that, Thompson spent the 2019 season at the helm of Wyoming East.

PARKERSBURG — Concord University graduate Larry Thompson was named Tuesday as the 13th head coach for the Parkersburg Catholic High School football program.

Last fall, the Crusaders of then head man Clint Fought were unable to field a team.

“I know I have to build from the ground up,” said Thompson, who played for the Mountain Lions and earned his degree in physical education in 2013. “Going in, I’m looking forward to meeting the kids and going from there.”

Thompson spent this past football season at Lab High School, which is located on the Louisiana State University campus, as the wide receivers coach and pass game coordinator.

“We are committed to producing scholar champions in the classroom, on the field and in our community,” stated M.C. Heffner, the principal at PCHS. “We are thrilled to have Larry Thompson join our team and help us advance our Crusaders.”

Thompson, a 2007 graduate of Massaponax High School in Virginia, moved right into the prep coaching ranks after leaving Concord.

In 2014, he started the rebuilding process at Mount View and went a combined 1-19 in his first two seasons. However, following 5-5 and 4-6 efforts the following two years, the Golden Knights went 9-1 during the 2018 regular season and finished with a 10-2 mark. The 10 victories were one shy of the school record.

He spent the 2019 season as the head coach at Wyoming East and led the Warriors to the postseason with an 8-3 mark.

“I loved what I was doing,” Thompson said of his time at Lab High School. “Ultimately, in my heart, I knew I wanted to get back up north closer to my family and my fiancee’s family and be able to rebuild a program and do what I’ve done in the past.

“I think Parkersburg is a great area to raise a family in and we plan on doing just that. Parkersburg Catholic had an opening and I seen it online. I realized it would be a good fit. They are on board with what I want to do. There’s going to be a lot of hard work to put into it.”

Athletic director Amanda Weatherwax noted “we feel coach Larry is the person best suited to continue our football program’s mission of championship performance. I wish to thank all of those who have shown interest in our position as well as all of those who supported us through this transition.

“This decision was extremely difficult, competitive, broad and diverse. The applicant pool was outstanding as was our candidate pool during the interview process.”

Thompson had hoped to be in Parkersburg this week for the announcement, but had his flight canceled due to weather.

He understands the most important part of the process is going to be getting players to come out.

“I know I’m going to have to build and grow and I’m all for that,” he said. “That was the issue going in. The enrollment kind of dropped because of COVID. I know there are challenges ahead of me. I fully understand that with the COVID year and the COVID craziness. I’m going to scrap and put together a team the best I can.

“I’m definitely going to get with the community and look into the youth programs, build a community relationship with the Parkersburg Catholic community, get those kids young and try to build the middle school program. I’m fully aware of the challenges going in, but I’m very optimistic.”

Thompson said he plans to move to Parkersburg sometime toward the end of May or in June.

Theoretically, the new head man said he prefers a balanced offensive attack and is more of a “power type of guy with RPO (run-pass option). Just trying to get 11 bodies. I know for a fact there’s 11 bodies that do want to play.

“I know that’s going to be a challenge in itself, as long as I can build the team and go from there in the next couple years. I’m ready to get going and I’m ready to start.”

Contact Jay Bennett at jbennett@newsandsentinel.com

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