By Anvil Welch
Globe Sports Writer
John Burgi, whose baseball coaching resume includes nearly a decade at Carthage High School, has returned to southwest Missouri from Arkansas.
Burgi, moving from Jonesboro Valley View High School, has been named coach at Hollister for the 2012-13 school year.
Burgi, who turns 55 on Sept. 22, said the No. 1 reason for the move, after 12 years in Arkansas, is simple.
“It puts us closer to our parents (at Carthage),” Burgi said Monday. “We’ve sold our home and will be moving to Branson in July.
“Hollister is Class 3 and is growing,” Burgi said. “Kevin Roepke (also football coach of the Tigers) stepped down as baseball coach. The Tigers have some players returning in baseball and people also are saying they have some good kids in the younger grades.
“The only head baseball coach I’ll know in the conference (Central Ozark Conference Small Division) will be Sam Berg at Buffalo,” Burgi said. “Berg, of course, is the former head coach at Southwest Baptist. Berg is the only one because Eric Briggs stepped down after several years at Bolivar High School.”
Kevin Burgi, John’s son, who finished his eligibility this spring under Bryce Darnell at Missouri Southern, will assist his dad at Hollister.
“Kevin also will assist Roepke in football,” John Burgi said. “He (Kevin Burgi) is the head coach this summer for the (Springfield-based) 16-year-old Midwest Nationals for Randy Merryman. He was asked to return to Slippery Rock (Pa.) to coach this year after playing with the Prospect League team last summer.”
Kevin Burgi plans to begin studies soon for a master’s degree at Southern.
John Burgi, who also will help in softball and teach American history, came to Arkansas to assist Bill Bethea at Arkansas State. He did that for two years before moving to Class 4A Valley View for 10 seasons. This spring’s 19-7 left him 229-83 for the decade. He won two state titles, guided another edition to the semifinals, won five regionals and sent seven of the 10 teams to the state tournament.
John Burgi, a 1975 Carthage graduate, attended Crowder College of Neosho — pitching for Gary Roark — before finishing at Emporia State for Dave Bingham.
Burgi, a member of the Crowder Baseball Hall of Fame, was the Carthage head coach for nine years before another nine at Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College.
Debbie and John also have a daughter, Addy, 26, who works in Jonesboro. Kevin is 22.
Debbie and John’s parents still living in Carthage are Mary and Ken McWilliams and Norma and Lloyd Burgi, respectively.