Fisher takes over as Barons’ new coach

By on August 30, 2017
Charlie Fisher, a former Manheim Central boys basketball assistant for six years, has been hired as the Barons’ new head coach, replacing Chris Sherwood, who stepped down in late July. Ephrata Review file photo

Charlie Fisher, a former Manheim Central boys basketball assistant for six years, has been hired as the Barons’ new head coach, replacing Chris Sherwood, who stepped down in late July. Ephrata Review file photo

When the Manheim Central head boys basketball coaching position opened at the end of July, Charlie Fisher immediately knew he had interest.

Even though he had a successful two-year stint as the Ephrata boys’ skipper, leading the Mounts to a 16-10 record in 2016-17 including berths in the Lancaster-Lebanon League and District Three 5A playoffs, Fisher quickly applied for the Barons’ job.

An MC assistant for six years under head coaches Tim Decker (2009-10) and Chris Sherwood (2010-15), Fisher continued to teach sixth-grade social studies at Manheim Central Middle School while coaching the Mounts.

Plus, he and his wife, Aimee, are expecting their first child in December.

“I knew that if I’m going to stay (at Manheim Central) long term for the teaching area,” Fisher said, “I might as well be there long term in all possible categories just to make it easier for myself and for my family.”

Fisher got his wish on Monday night when the Manheim Central school board approved him taking over as the Barons’ new boss.

It was a quick process, as he interviewed for the job last Wednesday, Aug. 23 and then was offered the position just one day later.

“They wanted to get it done by (Monday) because one, whoever the candidate was wanted to get in ASAP,” Fisher said, “and I think Manheim just wanted to give Ephrata the benefit of the doubt if it were to be me.”

The Mounts’ team this winter will be a senior-laden squad and one that could easily compete in Section Two of the L-L League standings. On Friday, Fisher got together with Ephrata’s players and delivered the news to them. He described the meeting as a being “quiet.”

“I’m a competitive guy and I was very competitive in high school,” he said. “It’s one of those things where you’re met with understanding, but at the same time, they’re like, ‘Man, I’m not too keen on this change.’ But the guys that were at the meeting and the guys that I texted were understanding and supportive. And the same thing goes with my coaching staff over at Ephrata. They all congratulated me with open arms and I was very appreciate of that. It made the last week a lot easier in that sense.”

Thanking his players and staff for everything over the past two years was his main objective.

“I loved every minute of it when I was at Ephrata,” Fisher said. “… But I just said, ‘Guys, if you ever get a job that you love, don’t let it go.’ I love teaching social studies, I love teaching at Manheim Central Middle School, and I don’t see myself leaving from that position as long as I am a teacher.”

Sherwood teaches just around the corner from Fisher and Matt Huber, who coaches the Barons’ baseball team, is in the classroom next door.

“It doesn’t get any better than that,” Fisher said. “I’ve got two of my best friends on the same wing and we teach the same kids and I teach a subject that I love.”

While coaching at Ephrata, however, his schedule would often times become crazy. Fisher, who also coaches the Manheim Central golf team, found himself having to leave his classroom to get on the road for practice at Ephrata, then rushing around to grade papers and do scouting reports at night.

Coaching and teaching in the same school district promises to make his routine more sane.

“It’s just going to make my life in that aspect easier,” Fisher remarked. “I can be more flexible with different things.”

Life with the Barons’ basketball team, he hopes, will be business as usual from where Sherwood left off. Over the past seven years, the Barons won 123 games and Fisher wants to just keep things rolling.

“I’m not going to go in there and change many things because if you watched Sherwood and I coach, a lot of our philosophies are similar and we ran a lot of the same things last year,” Fisher said. “But I’ll bring some things that worked for us at Ephrata and I’ll combine them with what had worked at Manheim Central and we’ll see what we can do.”

Eight seniors — including St. Joseph’s University-recruit Taylor Funk — graduated from the Manheim Central team that advanced to the District Three 5A quarterfinals and then to the PIAA playoffs.

But Fisher is entering his new position with the mindset that his Barons can continue to win. He is excited to work with returning starters Jake Novak and Connor Hostetter, both of whom are seniors, along with the other players on MC’s roster.

“There are some awesome kids, there are some tough kids,” Fisher said. “I worked a camp in the summer and Cam Sell, a junior-to-be, was there and he was unbelievable. Chase Marquee was one of the toughest kids at camp. I know there’s some great underclassmen coming up in the junior high ranks and freshmen ranks. I’ve seen Evan Hosler seen him play, I’ve been around him since he was in seventh grade, and the same thing goes with Drew Mummau. Will this team win 20 games? Who knows? I would love for that to happen, but my number one goal is to get to know these kids and then for us to be as good as we can heading into the season. I know for a fact that the junior class is tough as nails. Tanner Brenize’s younger brother, Carson, is a junior, so there’s definitely pieces there that I can’t wait to coach. And I’m just extremely excited to be back.”


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