From Staff Reports
Former Independence High School coach Tom Poe is the 2013 Retired Coach of the Year as named by the West Virginia Secondary Schools Athletic Coaches Association.
Poe was presented the award March 16 during halftime of the Class AAA boys basketball state championship game at the Charleston Civic Center.
While coaching at Independence, Poe started the golf team and in just four years his teams made two state tournament appearances. He was named Coalfield Conference Coach of the Year three times.
Poe also coached the Independence volleyball team for eight years and started the school’s softball program in 1988. During his 24 years as head softball coach, the Lady Patriots were Class AA state runner-up four times and won five regional titles and seven sectional titles.
Under his leadership, the softball program produced 24 first-team Class AA all-state players, and 32 athletes received college scholarships.
Poe guided his teams to 23 straight winning seasons and complied a varsity record of 437 wins and 163 losses. He also won Coalfield Conference Softball Coach of the Year award seven times and was selected the 2009 West Virginia Softball Coach of the Year.
He also coached the Sophia Junior High School football team for eight years.
Poe stepped down as the head coach of the Independence girls softball team in 2011. He remained for one season as assistant softball coach.