Athletic Director, Head Varsity Boys and Girls Tennis Coach, Head Varsity Girls Basketball Coach
During Coach Marsh's two years with the Girls' Basketball program, he has led them to a new level. The 2019-20 season was the most successful in the program's history. The team won 23 games, were Conference regular season and tournament champions, and also advanced to the State Tournament for the first time. Next year's team looks to build off that season and continue to put raise the expectations of the program. Coach Marsh took over the tennis program in 2018 and has continued the success from previous years. The boys and girls teams have both won State Championships in 2018 and 2019. The boys' team have now won 15 out of the last 17 State Championships. The girls' team have won the past 12 State Championships.
Sports Information Director, Varsity Girls Soccer Assistant Coach, Campus Experience Coordinator
Kayleigh Smith is entering her 4th year as a soccer coach at Episcopal Collegiate. Coach Smith, or "Coach K" as she's known by her athletes, played soccer for 19 years, and was part of the Lady Wampus Cat (Conway High School, Conway, AR.) 7A State Championship team in 2011, along with captaining her collegiate soccer team at Central Baptist College during her senior season. During her 1st year as an Episcopal coach, she assisted Coach Duke Ophof in leading the varsity squad to the Quarter-Final of the State Tournament in 2018, and during her 2nd year, she and Coach Ophof led the team to the 2019 State Tournament Semi-Final, finishing the season with a 15-3-1 record. With an exciting start to the 2020 season that was unfortunately cut short due to COVID-19, Coach Smith is excited for the talent and passion the team will bring back to the 2021 spring season. Coach Smith earned her Bachelor's Degree from Central Baptist College (Conway, AR.) and her Master's Degree from William Woods University (Fulton, MO.).
Michelle Edwards is entering her 17th year in the Athletic Training profession. She has experience at the college and high levels, where she has had the opportunity to be apart of several championship level teams. She is employed by CHI St. Vincent and has been with Episcopal Collegiate for 10 years. She earned her Bachelor's Degree at the University of Central Arkansas.
Allison Shaw is entering her third year as an athletic trainer. Ms. Shaw is a graduate of the University of Arkansas, earning a Bachelor's in Kinesiology in 2014, and a graduate of University of Central Arkansas, earning a Bachelor's in Athletic Training in 2018. While at UCA, she worked with the volleyball, baseball, and football teams. Ms. Shaw has also worked with Cabot and Pulaski Academy Athletics as the athletic training student, and is excited to embark on her second year at Episcopal!
Head Varsity Boys Soccer Coach
A native of Asunción, Paraguay, Coach Asad is excited to be returning to Episcopal's coaching staff as the Boys Varsity Soccer coach. He has taught history and coached soccer at schools such as the Interlochen Arts Academy and Shorecrest Preparatory in the U.S., and also at American international schools in South Korea and Paraguay. He has coached both boys and girls teams, and has trained championship-winning teams on three separate continents. Asad has also served as a professional soccer trainer in the Tampa Bay area. Coach Asad is looking forward to an excellent 2nd season with the scholar-athletes at Episcopal.
Head Varsity Football Coach
Coach Carter graduated from the University of Central Arkansas, earning four letters as a football player, and then embarked on a long career in coaching and education, the 2019 campaign marking his 27th season. His coaching stops have all been in Central Arkansas, and have seen him garner Conference Coach of the Year honors, Hooten's/Farm Bureau State Coach of the Year, and the Brayden James Memorial Award for Excellence in Coaching. He was also the President of the Arkansas Football Coaches Association, a two-year delegate for USA Football, and is a USA National HS Football Coaches Alliance Board Member.
Head Varsity Boys Basketball Coach, Head Varsity Golf Coach
A native of Victoria, Texas, Coach Friedel spent his collegiate basketball career at nearby Arkansas Tech University, where he was a NCAA Division II All-American, GAC Conference Player of the Year, and two-time All-Conference for the league champions in 2009 and 2010. Friedel led the Wonder Boys to a #1 national ranking in his senior season. His entire coaching career has been spent at Episcopal Collegiate, helping guide the boys basketball team to three state championships, one as a head coach, and numerous conference and region championships.
Head Varsity Volleyball Coach, Lower School Physical Education Teacher
Episcopal Collegiate would like to welcome Paige Gantar as the new Head Volleyball Coach and Lower School Physical Education Teacher. As a player, Coach Gantar enjoyed an extensive and successful college career at both UA Little Rock and the University of Central Arkansas. In her first three years as a member of the Little Rock Trojans volleyball team, Coach Gantar was named to several all-tournament teams. In her sophomore and junior years, she played in every set and led UALR in blocks both years, in kills her sophomore year, and finished as the 8th all-time leader in blocks in UA Little Rock history. Coach Gantar finished her college career playing her senior year at UCA and leading her team to an undefeated season (21-0) and winning the Southland Conference Championship. That season, she held the overall highest hitting percentage as a middle blocker. She graduated from UCA with a Masters of Science in Health Science in 2015. During her time at both UALR and UCA, Paige was awarded with the Sunbelt Conference Academic Honor Roll, the Southland Academic Honor Roll, Dean's List and Chancellor's List.
Head Varsity Track and Field Coach, Assistant Varsity Football Coach
Coach Jackson has coached at Episcopal Collegiate for ten years, mostly as a football, basketball, and track coach. He currently serves as an assistant varsity football coach and as the head coach for track and field. Coach Jackson graduated from Camden-Fairview High School in Camden, Arkansas, then graduated from Henderson State University, where he was a track athlete and four year letterman in football. He has coached at schools in Texas and Arkansas. In 2011, he earned a Master's from Lamar University.
Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Head Junior High Football Coach, Assistant Varsity Boys Basketball Coach, Head Junior High Basketball Coach, Assistant Varsity Track Coach
Coach Tyrell Johnson is entering his 4th year on staff at Episcopal Collegiate. A former stand-out athlete at Rison High School (Rison, AR.), he went on to become a four-time All Sun Belt selection, a 2007 NCAA football All-American, and a record holder for tackles in a single game in the NCAA while earning his Bachelor's Degree at Arkansas State University. With 7 year of NFL playing experience, Coach Johnson's strength training classes and coaching are not only increasing athletic abilities in students, but teaching them the importance of perseverance and dedication.
Head Varsity Baseball Coach, Assistant Varsity Girls Basketball Coach, Head PSL Football Coach, Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach
Coach Lister is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, earning a Bachelor’s in Exercise Science and a minor in Health and Physical Education. Coach Lister is a highly decorated Air Force veteran of 25 years who was awarded the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal and Korean Service Medal. Coach Lister served in Operation Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Coach Lister has 7 years of high school baseball coaching experience and over 12 years of showcase coaching experience. Coach Lister has helped over 380 players obtain scholarships and currently has 3 players drafted into major league baseball. Coach Lister also has a passion for coaching girls basketball.
Head Varsity Girls Soccer Coach, Head 9th Grade Volleyball Coach
Coach Ophof is the 9th Grade Volleyball coach and Varsity Girls Soccer coach. He has played soccer for over 40 years, and coached soccer for 14 years at Episcopal Collegiate and 24 years overall. Also, he has coached volleyball for 7 years at Episcopal Collegiate and has played the sport for 10 years.
Head Varsity Girls Cross Country Coach, Head Junior High Girls Cross Country Coach
Running courses is in Coach Lenfestey’s blood! She’s been a Cross Country and Track coach for more than a decade, and she was an accomplished runner in high school and college before that. More, she remains an active distance runner — with a completion of the prestigious Boston Marathon to her name and aspirations for an ultra marathon in the near future. Guiding the next generation of runners, and nurturing their development as persons who seek to remain fit for a life of personal and professional success, are central to Coach Lenfestey’s identity as a coach and runner.
Head Varsity Boys Cross Country Coach, Head Junior High Boys Cross Country Coach
Coach Tamo is a Little Rock native and 2008 graduated of Catholic High. He was a member of his Catholic's 2007 State Championship winning soccer team and captained CHS's Cross Country team his Senior year in 2008. After swimming competitively for eight years, he began his coaching experience with the Otter Creek Otters Summer League Swim Team between 2005 - 2009. After graduating from UCA's Honors College in 2012, he completed his MA Social Justice & Human Rights at Arizona State University. In addition to coaching, Sam serves our History Department teaching 6th Grade World History. He is now in his fifth year coaching in our Wildcat Cross Country Program with 7th-12th grade male athletes.
Head Varsity Cheerleading Coach
Ms. Selby Whitbeck is entering entering her 1st year as our Head Varsity Cheerleading Coach after serving as assistant coach for 2 years. Ms. Selby is a native of Little Rock and alumni of Episcopal Collegiate's Middle School. She then attended Little Rock Central High School and went on to the University of Alabama where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. Ms. Selby cheered for competitive all-star and school squads for 11 years. She has cheered for the Cheer Central Braves, Cheer City United Titans, Episcopal Collegiate Wildcats, LR Central High Tigers, and continued weekly tumbling and stunting classes while in college. Cheerleading taught Ms. Selby valuable lessons about teamwork, perseverance, and athleticism. She is passionate about imparting these same life lessons to her cheerleaders and loves helping others find their school spirit!
Cheer Program Director, Head Junior High Cheer Coach, Head Varsity Softball Coach
Melissa Wilson-Baker, a native of North Little Rock, Arkansas is entering her 14th season as the Junior High Cheer Coach at Episcopal and the Spirit Coordinator for all divisions. In addition to coaching her cheer team, she is the Spirit Coordinator for the PSL, Junior High, and Varsity cheer teams. She will also enter her 4th season as the Head Coach of the Varsity Softball team, which is a sport she played for 13 years. You can also find her keeping all of the official score books for our Volleyball and Basketball games. Before her time at Episcopal, Coach Baker attended North Little Rock High School, the University of Central Arkansas, where she earned a Bachelors of Science, and the University of Arkansas-Little Rock, where she received her Masters of Art in Teaching
Girls Lacrosse Head Coach
Coach Butler is excited to lead the girls' lacrosse team in their second season at Episcopal Collegiate. Originally from Charlotte, North Carolina, Sydney played lacrosse in high school and captained the team her senior year. This is Coach Butler's third year coaching girls' lacrosse overall. She is excited to share the sport with 8th-12th grade girls at Episcopal as lacrosse continues to grow in the region. In addition to coaching, Coach Butler is the 6th grade science teacher at Episcopal Collegiate.
Assistant Junior Varsity Volleyball Coach, Assistant Varsity Volleyball Coach
Laura Crawford begins her 6th year of teaching at Episcopal (second grade) and her 3rd year as the Junior Varsity and Varsity Assistant Volleyball Coach. This will be her 4th year as part of the Wildcat Volleyball family. She is also the 5th and 6th grade PSL Volleyball Coordinator.Laura is a native of Little Rock and graduated from Mount St. Mary Academy. She grew up in a family of sports, and she has coached girls' basketball and volleyball for 10 years. She loves all sports and all of the growth they offer to kids on and off the court. Laura graduated from Arkansas State University with a Bachelors of Science in Physical Education with an emphasis in Sports Administration. After teaching PE for 2 years at a local school, she decided to pursue her Masters of Arts in Teaching and make a move into the classroom. She finished her Masters at the University of Central Arkansas in 2013 and in 2018, added her Dyslexia Interventionist License. Most recently, Coach Crawford assisted in leading the 2019 Wildcat Volleyball team to claim the 3A State Championship, with a 26-2 record.
Head Middle School Tennis Coach, Assistant Varsity Tennis Coach, Head Middle School Soccer Coach
Coach Duncan, a coaching veteran of Episcopal's soccer and tennis programs, graduated from Jesuit High School in Oregon and Oregon State University. While a player at Jesuit, Coach Duncan helped guide her team to 100 straight wins during her soccer career. When she moved on to Oregon State to continue her soccer career, she led the team in goals as only a freshman and assists as a sophomore and junior, later earning a spot on the Pac-10 Conference's All-Academic Team. She has also coached club soccer teams to state titles and has been a coach for nine years of state champion tennis teams.
Assistant Varsity Boys Soccer Coach
Currently in his third year as a teacher at Episcopal, Coach Gooch is excited to serve a second year as Varsity Boys Assistant Soccer Coach. Previously, he was the Junior Varsity Boys Soccer Coach for 2 years at Tyner Academy High School in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he rediscovered his love for the sport he played through middle and high school. Coach Gooch says he had the best teacher in the world when it comes to coaching-- his dad, who volunteered his time to act as coach for Gooch and his friends for 6 years in Fort Worth, Texas. After the incredible start to last year's season that was unfortunately cut short, Coach Gooch is looking forward to what promises to be a great year for Wildcat athletics.
Assistant Football, Assistant Baseball
Episcopal Collegiate is thrilled to welcome Coach Adam Hargrave! Coach Hargrave will be joining our Physical Education staff in the Lower School and will be contributing to athletics as an Assistant Football and Assistant Baseball coach. Previously, Hargrave has coached football and baseball for Lonoke, England and Marion. Coach Hargrave graduated from University of Arkansas-Monticello and has two master’s degrees in education. Since joining the football staff this summer, Coach Hargrave has made major contributions to the program.
REV. ROB LEACOCK
Assistant Middle School Soccer Coach
Currently in his eleventh year as a school chaplain, the Rev. Rob Leacock is serving as Middle School Assistant Soccer Coach for the third season in a row. Father/Coach Rob is an ardent supporter of Wildcat Athletics as a vital part of a student’s mental, physical, and spiritual growth. He especially appreciates the collegiality modeled by the coaching staff. An ordained priest in the Episcopal Church, Father Rob holds degrees from Davidson College and the Yale University Divinity School. He is an avid follower of West Bromwich Albion FC.
Assistant Varsity Girls Basketball Coach, Assistant Varsity Softball Coach
Coach Johnson has a plethora of accolades, from her high school career, until completion of her career at Mississippi State. Most notably she was a starter in all 39 games in her senior season, averaging 29.9 minutes, averaged 11.3 ppg., was seventh in State season record, 4th in shooting from arc w/41% , shooting 87.7% from free throws, finished 3rd in SEC in steals, had 93 assists (third-most on team) and was 1st at MSU, 6th in SEC history, in career 3FG% (42.9%). Coach Johnson also hit the tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation in MSU’s Final Four win against Louisville. Johnson also excelled in the classroom, be named to the SEC Honor Roll in 2016-17 and 2017-18. Coach Johnson graduated from Mississippi State University in 2018 with a Bachelor's in Interdisciplinary Studies, concentrated in psychology, sociology, and physical education. During the 2019-2020 season, Johnson was the Volunteer Assistant Coach for Episcopal Collegiate. The team won 23 games, were the regular season champs, the tournament season champs, and went to State tournament for the first time in program history. Coach Johnson has also played both volleyball and softball.
Head Middle School Boys Basketball Coach; Assistant PSL Football Coach
Mahlon Martin, Class of 2015, is entering his second year on the Episcopal Collegiate Athletics staff as the Middle School Boys Basketball coach and the PSL Football Assistant Coach. Coach Martin was a 4 year collegiate basketball player at Ouachita Baptist University, where he had over 1,000 collegiate career points, was second team all-conference his senior year, and during his freshman year, helped the Tigers become Conference Tournament Champions and make an NCAA Tournament appearance. While at Episcopal, Martin was a 4 year starter, 3x All-State player, 2x 3A MVP, 3x All-Arkansas Prep team member, and 2x State Champion, graduating as the school's all-time leading scorer.
7th Grade Volleyball Coach
Elise Parker will be entering her second year on the Episcopal volleyball coaching staff, where she will be serving as coach for the 7th grade volleyball team. Coach Parker played volleyball consistently throughout middle and high school. She was afforded the opportunity to play Junior Olympic Volleyball her Sophomore and Junior year where she excelled as a setter. After becoming a teacher, she continued to share her love for volleyball with her students serving as Junior Varsity and Varsity Coach for 4 years at Evangel Christian Academy in Shreveport. While at Evangel, the Varsity team earned two district titles, and she was awarded coach of the year after each of those outstanding seasons. After Evangel, Coach Parker accepted a teaching position at Loyola College Prep in Shreveport where she served for 3 years as the 9th grade volleyball coach and acted as an assistant coach for the Junior Varsity and Varsity squad. Coach Parker brings a tremendous amount of experience and enthusiasm for volleyball. She is looking forward to an amazing second season at Episcopal. Go Wildcats!
8th Grade Volleyball Coach
Coach Pettibone played Volleyball every year in Junior High School and High School. During her 11th and 12th grade years, she also played on a competitive Junior Olympic volleyball team, and then went on to play in college for two years. Many years later, after college and graduate school, she began teaching Spanish and coaching JV, and then Varsity, volleyball at Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, where she coached for several years. She also coached for the Little Rock Juniors Volleyball Club for seven years. In 2009, she began her career at Episcopal Collegiate School. After a year working in the Lower School, she moved to the Upper School and began teaching Spanish to Middle and Upper School students, and started coaching volleyball again! She coached at Episcopal for six years, and then had to make the difficult decision to let that go for a few years, and now is so happy to be back on the court with the outstanding, courageous 8th grade "Volleycats!"
Assistant Varsity Boys Basketball Coach, Junior Varsity Boys Basketball Coach, Director of PSL Basketball
Carl Vault III, a native of Little Rock, Arkansas, became a basketball fanatic at a very young age. A High School stand-out, in his own right, Vault would continue pursuing his dream at Harding University. In 2016, Coach Vault achieved another personal goal by winning his 1st State Title at Episcopal Collegiate School. Coach Vault's love for the game has landed him in a position to do what he does best, train at a high level because he's seen 1st hand what it takes to make it. "I've been blessed to study one of the best to do it first hand and love having the opportunity to pay it forward."