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Tomahawk Talk: Time to pay Pavusek some respect for loyalty

JCHS Baseball coach Pete Pavusek has led the Longhorns for nearly 25 years. One of the most respected coaches in East Tennessee, Pavusek has garnered 327 wins as Johnson County’s head baseball coach. 

By Tim Chambers
Sports Editor

You won’t find Johnson County’s baseball program among the state’s elite, but you also won’t find anyone in the area who does not respect their head coach. Pete Pavusek has been at the helm since 1996 when he won his first game 12-2 over Unaka. Nearly 25 years have passed since then, and Coach Pete is still in uniform as the Longhorns’ skipper.  Since 1996 the head coach has added 327 more wins to his resume and is one of the more respected coaches in East Tennessee. 

“Nobody gets more out of his players than what Pavusek does,” said Elizabethton’s head coach Ryan Presnell last season. “He’s a good man and a lot of fun to coach against. They always play hard for him.”

Pavusek played baseball at the University of Maine and chose to make his home in Johnson County. He’s given most of his life to the school system, and Coach Pete has said many times that they have given back to him.  I am asking the school board to go a step further. 

It’s time we honored Coach Pavusek and named the baseball field in his honor. “Pavusek Park” has a great ring to it, and former players like Johnson County businessman Nathan Winters who pitched the first win of Pavusek’s career, would all be in favor of it. 

It would be just a small token of appreciation for what he has given back to the Johnson County community and its high school.  We are talking about playing in a conference that has put a team in the state tournament for three consecutive seasons and had one player sign a 1.25 million dollar major league contract for being the 50th overall pick of the draft.