The Edmond Sun

August 22, 2013

New baseball coach Phillips begins practice at Santa Fe

Scott Wanish
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — This afternoon was Ryan Phillips’ second practice leading the Wolfpack baseball players at Edmond Santa Fe High School.

Phillips, who actually was a Wolf himself in his freshman season, never got to see the varsity field. Being in a military family, Phillips moved to Altus where he had an 8-3 spring as a left-handed pitcher before moving on to Barton County Community College in Great Bend, Kan. He posted a 10-2 mark there before being drafted by the Boston Red Sox.

Phillips’ father first moved the family from New York to Edmond, where both older brothers, Robbie and Tyler, played basketball at Santa Fe High School.

Though not official until next month’s board meeting, Ryan landed the Santa Fe coaching position Friday and began practice with the Wolves yesterday.

“I’m very excited,” Phillips said. “On Tuesday, the first day of school, I was introduced to the players. I always wanted to be a head coach but it had to be a good job and Santa Fe is a good job.

“When it came open, I just threw my name in there.”

Phillips, 29, already was residing in Edmond with his wife Lyndsey, son Easton, 6, and daughter Brooklyn, 2. The Phillips’ are expecting another child.

“The timing is not right; it puts us in a bind,” said Southmoore head coach Craig Troxell, the school Phillips came in from. “The timing is horrible. He is our pitching coach.

“But I’d be selfish if I didn’t want him to go. It’s a head job; it’s a good job there.”

Phillips was an assistant at Southmoore since the school’s inception in 2008. He was an assistant under Troxell since 2011 when Troxell came over from Midwest City, where he coached current Los Angeles Dodger Matt Kemp. In Troxell’s initial season, he and Phillips posted 27 wins for the SaberCats after Southmoore went 7-24 in its opening season of ‘08.

“He’s a character guy, a Santa Fe boy and he is close to home,” Troxell said of Phillips. “He worked hard here for five years and was committed to this school.

“In the big scheme of things, it is time to experience being a head coach.

“Heck yeah, he’ll do a good job.”

At Santa Fe, Phillips will be teaching business classes such as accounting.

“I loved it there (Southmoore),” Phillips said. “It was my first coaching job, but I think I’m going to love Edmond more.

“I lived in Edmond in the offseason (of playing in the minor leagues). Santa Fe always has good arms and guys that throw hard and it will be fun to work with athletes like that.”

Phillips replaced Jeff Shafer, who resigned at the start of the month to become the athletic director at Tecumseh.