Long time baseball coach and math teacher John Fletcher announced that he will be stepping down as head baseball coach before the 2021 season. Although Fletcher will no longer be coaching baseball at Godwin, he will continue to be involved in the sport, as he has accepted a head baseball coach position at Richard Bland College.
According to Fletcher, his father first introduced him to baseball.
“My father coached little league baseball when I was growing up, bringing me into the game early,” said Fletcher.
Fletcher grew up playing baseball. He was a pitcher and catcher at Loudon County High School in Northern Virginia. For college, he went on to pitch at Randolph Macon College.
“It was in college when I realized I enjoyed working with and helping others,” said Fletcher. This is what inspired Fletcher to start coaching.
Before coaching baseball at Godwin, Fletcher was a freshman basketball coach at Manchester High School in Chesterfield County. Fletcher also coached baseball at Manchester.
A few years into his coaching at Manchester, Fletcher was presented with an opportunity to teach and coach baseball at Godwin. That opportunity led him to 10 years of coaching baseball and teaching math at Godwin.
According to Fletcher, his favorite baseball coaching memory at Godwin was coaching in the state playoffs in 2019. Fletcher led Godwin to two wins in the state tournament. For their second win, they won off of a run in the bottom half of the last inning. This run won the game. Even though Godwin did not win the state championship, the two state tournament wins provided Fletcher with fond memories of coaching at Godwin.
According to varsity baseball team pitcher and junior Matt Cornwell, Fletcher has been a mentor to him on and off the field.
“Coach Fletcher has impacted me by helping me become a better all around player, and he has taught us to stay focused,” said Cornwell.
Godwin Director of Student Activities Tom Nadeau has worked with Fletcher for a long time.
“Coach Fletcher was able to take the traditions of Godwin baseball and transition them to the current game. He expected players to do the right thing everyday and he expected them to improve,” said Nadeau.
Josh Genty, former varsity assistant coach, will be the interim head coach for Godwin. According to Gentry, Fletcher made an impact on Godwin’s baseball team that will continue into the future.
“The traditions [Fletcher] created have stayed true for [a decade] and those will never change,” said Gentry.
Fletcher wishes the Godwin program nothing but success in the future. “Success is all about preparation and putting yourself in a position to succeed,” said Fletcher. He hopes those beliefs will be instilled in the players for years to come.
Closing one chapter and opening up another can be scary for some, but Coach Fletcher is looking forward to coaching at the next level. He is most looking forward to “the challenges that go along with starting a brand new program on the collegiate level.”