Life after Pete Meadows has turned into a game of musical chairs at Augusta Christian School.
Since Meadows ended a successful seven-year stint as AC's head baseball coach in 2000, four men have been hired to lead the Lions.
Make that five.
Augusta Christian athletic director Bruce Lane announced last week that Craig Johnson has replaced former baseball coach Eric Lairsey, who decided to focus on completing his college course work instead of returning for a second season on the diamond.
"It was a surprise that the position came open," said Johnson, who came on staff this season as defensive coordinator for the AC football team. "I certainly put my name in the hat. I'm very lucky and happy to get the baseball job."
Meadows led the Lions to two state titles, but moved on to coach at Westminster after the 2000 season.
Subsequently, Terry Weaver, stepped in, but he didn't even coach a single game before accepting a coaching job at Liberty University.
Chileno Valdez then took over, but after two seasons, he was relieved of his dugout duties by former AC athletic director Mike Gold.
Gold was set to coach the Lions last season, but left Augusta Christian three months before the season started.
Then Lairsey was tapped as coach, but now he's history.
Johnson wants to end this coaching version of "Who's on first?"
"I plan on being here a while," he said. "I'd like to bring some consistency to the program. Bouncing around from coach to coach is tough on high school kids. We want to get the program back to where it was."
Johnson has coached with Georgia Independent Schools Association programs at Monroe Academy and John Milledge Academy, so he is familiar with the baseball tradition Meadows started at Augusta Christian.
His immediate goal is to bring back the glory days.
"Winning region is always the expectation around here. Augusta Christian always has the athletes to be real competitive," Johnson said. "We'll start practice in January, and keep trying to improve every day. We want to have a winning season, win the region and win a state title. That's why you play."
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