Owls get 2-for-1 special Rihard, Stull team up to guide Westminster

April 09, 1993|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Staff Writer

It took five years to put this coaching combination together, but it was worth the wait for the Westminster High baseball team.

Carl Rihard and Guy Stull have joined forces to coach the Owls' baseball team and bring stability to a program that had three coaches from 1986 to 1988.

Both men have called it a "perfect situation" and plan to remain together indefinitely.

"We see so many things alike," Stull said. "Our philosophy and goals for the team are similar. Neither one of us is there to feed our egos. We're there to help the boys learn the game and run a disciplined program. We go by the rules set up by the county."

Rihard is officially the head coach and Stull is the assistant.

But Rihard said: "We're co-coaches. Guy and I are perfect fit. I'm a quiet guy during the game, except when it comes time to argue with the umpires. I do the arguing and let Guy take care of the chattering, which keeps the kids in the game."

Stull, who coached the Westminster varsity team from 1972 to 1979, is back after seven years as head football coach and seven years as junior varsity baseball coach.

Stull, 47, has been around baseball most of his life and was an outstanding baseball and football player at Bridgewater (Va.) College after a superb career in both sports at Frederick High. He is considered one of the best high school batting practice pitchers in the state.

"Mr. Stull can throw strikes all day long," said Owls center fielder Todd Dorsey.

However, Stull said he's not looking for glory.

"When you're younger, you need to feed your ego," he said. "Carl and I are past that now. We just want to help the program gain respect. Carl and I are strong in different areas. I work with the infielders because I played there [first base], and he handles the pitchers and outfielders. We also do a lot of the same things when we're working on drills."

Stull talked Rihard, 38, into taking over the varsity in 1989, and it took Rihard two years to persuade Stull to join him this season.

"Guy teaches drivers' education just down the hall from me," said Rihard, who is a math teacher. "He came to me five years ago when we were constantly changing coaches and asked me to coach the varsity. He couldn't do it because of family responsibilities. I turned it down at first but finally agreed under the condition that I do it for a long time."

Rihard, like Stull, grew up playing baseball and played at Boonsboro High. He played briefly at Frostburg State.

"It didn't take me long to figure out in college that I wasn't going to make it as a player," Rihard said. "Everybody was good. But I tookbaseball courses under Frostburg coach Bob Wells, who is an excellent teacher. The only way the game makes sense to you is to teach it to someone else and then you can understand why you need to have a certain person have the ball and their hand on things like a relay play."

In four years without Stull, Rihard put together a 44-28 record as varsity coach.

Now the two laid-back Western Marylanders are hoping to take the Owls to a higher level.

"Our practices are constructive so we can accomplish the fundamentals we set out to do," Stull said. "Kids are sometimes looking for the easy way out, but it doesn't work that way on this team. If you step out of line, you pay the price."

Rihard said he gets a kick out of a youngster executing the fundamentals properly.

"A nice throw from the outfield makes your chest pop out a little," he said. "You're kind of like a father out there."

Rihard has just enough pitching ability to instruct his players on the finer points of changing speeds and using special pitches in certain situations.

"The other day I felt good when I was able to make a point with one of my pitchers during practice," he said. "I let him bat off me and stand behind me while I was pitching and he could see the importance of changing speeds and my cut fastball moving just enough to be effective."

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