When Ashland High School’s current baseball coach, Nick Hall, first took up the role in 2016, hopes were high. Now, in 2023, as he officially steps down from the role as Ashland’s coach. He leaves behind a successful track record that will leave the school hard-pressed to find a satisfactory successor.
So, why is he stepping down? Differences with staff? Arguments on an executive level? Difficulties with the players themselves? Well, as far as we know, Nick Hall is just ready to move on, and that’s that. That’s as good a reason as any, of course, and we don’t mind that he’s ready to retire from the position.
“Mainly I think it’s kind of time for me to just move on and focus on a few other things in my life,” said Hall after seven years of coaching the team. “It’s a pretty big commitment to be coaching at the high school level. I’m just kind of ready to put that chapter behind me a little bit.”
Hall went under what could be considered three separate rebuilds during his successful career, which is understandably a big commitment to be adjusting to new players each and every year.
“I am very thankful for the opportunity to have coached at Ashland for the last eight years,”
he continued, expressing his gratitude towards the school that had appreciated his service towards their sports team.
“It has been a huge honor to give back to my high school baseball program, a program that meant the world to me growing up. I have had the opportunity to coach alongside some amazing men and got to meet, mentor and hopefully inspire some amazing young men along the way as well.”
Hall finishes his Ashland career after bringing the team to the Class 5A state semifinals this spring. He snagged a 19-11 overall record with his team and finished runner-up in the Midwestern League, which was to state champion Thurston.
“My main goal was always to share my love and joy for the game of baseball with everyone,”
the coach said, expressing a more personal side,
“and to hold them to a standard of excellence so that they could achieve more than what they thought was possible of themselves. The memories that I have made coaching at Ashland will last a lifetime and I am so thankful for everyone that made coaching here awesome. Ashland baseball has been like a second family to me throughout my entire life and it will always have a special place in my heart.”
Hall put in his resignation at the age of 31. His overall record was 90-86. As coach of the Grizzlies, his term could be considered both impressive and unique. He brought them to the state quarterfinals twice, which not a lot of coaches can say they’ve done.
He’d actually played for Ashland back in 2008, where he proudly helped his state championship team, as well as snagging second-place in 2010. He was more than experienced for the job, especially as Ashland alumni, and to him, coaching the Grizzlies was his dream come true.
“Looking back, I’m really proud of what we were able to accomplish over that timeframe,” Hall had readily said. “When I first took the team over in 2016, they were kind of looking for some identity and some consistency and I think we were able to provide that.”
In 2019, they were able to reach the playoffs with a score of 16-10, and again in 2022, when they reached a 17-8 overall. That certainly made Ashland a serious contender with other teams.
“It’s something that I’ve grown to really love to do. With my background in baseball and my love for the sport, at some point I’ll be out there again in some capacity or another,” he expressed. “Right now I’m just kind of ready for a little break.”
He was unclear if this break would be indefinite.
Hopefully Ashland High will be able to find their new coach soon enough, and they have plenty of time to.
There’s only one thing I can say for sure: wherever he’s going, he’ll do great, and we wish him all the best in his future ventures.