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Athletic Staff

 

Meet Our Athletic Director

 

Coach Monty Smith has been a coach, leader, role model, and mentor for athletes all over the state of Arkansas for twenty-two years. In his coaching career, Coach Smith has been named Volleyball Coach of the Year eight times, Varsity Girls Basketball Coach of the Year once, and all-around Coach of the Year ten times. 

Coach Smith began working at Episcopal Collegiate 15 years ago as a ninth grade history teacher. Since that time, he has been a Civics Teacher, Advisor, Assistant Athletic Director, Varsity and Middle School Girls Head Basketball Coach, Assistant Softball Coach, Bus Driver, and now the Varsity Girls Head Volleyball Coach and Director of Athletics for Episcopal Collegiate.

Catch Coach Smith on the field, court, track, in the stands or simply walking across campus always ready with a "Go Wildcats" yell!

athletic staff

Michael Carter

Upper School Dean of Students, Head 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.


Laura Crawford

2nd Grade, Assistant Junior Varsity Volleyball Coach, Assistant Varsity Volleyball Coach

Laura Crawford begins her 5th year of teaching at Episcopal and her 2nd year as the Junior Varsity and Varsity Assistant Volleyball Coach. Laura is a native of Little Rock and graduated form Mount St. Mary Academy. She grew up in a family of sports, and she has coached girls' basketball and volleyball for 7 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 Management. 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.


Lindsey Duncan

Physical Education Department Head, Middle and Upper School Physical Education, 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 eight years of state champion tennis teams.

Michelle Edwards

Athletic Trainer
Michelle Edwards is entering her 15th 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 8 years. She earned her Bachelor's Degree at the University of Central Arkansas.

Brandon Friedel

Middle & Upper School Physical Education, 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.

Simon Gooch

Upper School English, Assistant Boys Varsity Soccer Coach

Coach Gooch is excited to join the Athletic Department as the Varsity Boys Soccer Assistant Coach as he begins his 2nd year at Episcopal Collegiate School. 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 has 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. Gooch is looking forward to serving the boys soccer team for a successful and exciting season in the spring.

Troy Jackson

Lower School Physical Education, Assistant Varsity Football Coach, Head Varsity Track and Field Coach
Coach Jackson has coached at Episcopal Collegiate for nearly a decade, 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 star athlete in football and track. He has coached at schools in Texas and Arkansas. In 2011, he earned a Master's from Lamar University.

Tyrell Johnson

Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Assistant Varsity Boys Basketball Coach, Head Junior High Basketball Coach

Coach Tyrell Johnson is entering his 3rd 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.

Kara Lenfestey

Middle & Upper School Math, Junior High Girls Cross Country Coach, Varsity 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.

Stephen Lister

Upper School Health, PSL Football Coach, Assistant Varsity Girls Basketball Coach, Assistant Varsity Baseball 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 5 years of high school baseball coaching experience and over 10 years of showcase coaching experience. Coach Lister has helped over 375 players obtain scholarships and currently has 3 players drafted into major league baseball. Coach Lister also has a passion for coaching girls basketball. Coach Lister’s coaching duties will be PSL football, assistant girls basketball and baseball.


Micah Marsh

Associate Athletic Director, Varsity Boys and Girls Tennis Coach, Head Varsity Girls Basketball Coach

With over 20 seasons of collegiate or high school basketball coaching experience, Coach Micah Marsh is back at Episcopal Collegiate to continue a dominant run. As head boys coach, Coach Marsh led the team to state tournament appearances in each of his five seasons at the helm, including state championships in 2014 and 2015 and a state runner-up in 2013. His boys teams included multiple All-State players, two Players of the Year, and produced many college basketball players. He won the 2014 All Arkansas Preps Coach of Year, 2014 ArBCA 3A Coach of the Year, and recognized five times as a conference coach of the year.

His prior coaching stop included his alma mater of Alcoa High School, in Alcoa, Tennessee. While at Alcoa High he led the tornadoes to one final four, 2 elite eight and 4 sweet sixteen state tournament appearances. Before Alcoa, he was an assistant coach for 2 years at Arkansas State University, where he was also an All-Conference and ASU Hall of Honor basketball player.

Richie Marsh

Assistant Athletic Director, Head Varsity Baseball Coach, Upper School History Teacher

Entering his 21st season as a coach, Coach Marsh has 18 years of high school and college football coaching experience, as well as long stints as a high school baseball coach, and stretches as a basketball, softball, and track coach. He's been fortunate to be part of state championship teams in Tennessee and has coached numerous state players of the year. Coach Marsh earned a Bachelor's degree from Carson-Newman University in Jefferson City, Tennessee, and a Master's in History from Louisiana Tech University. He hails from Alcoa, Tennessee, where he was a standout football and baseball player at Alcoa High School


Lucas McHan

Middle and Upper School Math, Statistics, Assistant Varsity Football Coach, Assistant Softball Coach
Coach McHan is an Assistant Coach for the Varsity Football and Varsity Softball programs. Originally from Haughton High School, outside Shreveport, Louisiana, McHan was a member of the school's highly successful baseball and football teams, eventually earning a degree from the University of Louisiana, Monroe. He teaches math and statistics in the Upper and Middle Schools.

Duke Ophof

Head Varsity Girls Soccer Coach, 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 13 years at Episcopal Collegiate and 24 years overall. Also, he has coached volleyball for 6 years at Episcopal Collegiate and has played the sport for 10 years.

Elicia Owen

Middle School Science, Upper School Science, Varsity Cheerleading Coach
Coach Owen will be serving for the 2nd year as the Head Varsity Cheer Coach. She worked diligently during the 2018-2019 season to build strong relationships with her squad, assisted in re-energizing pep rallies, and assisted the captains in building stronger performances throughout the season. The squad began their season earning Most Improved, Technical Excellence in Voice, a bid to Nationals, and a spirit stick at the 2019 NCA Cheer Camp. Coach O is excited to see the squad continue to grow and reach new heights in this school year.



Elise Parker

6th and 7th Grade Writing, Writing Center, 7th Grade Volleyball

Elise Parker will be joining the Episcopal volleyball coaching staff this year 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 first season at Episcopal. Go Wildcats!

Debbie Pettibone

Middle and Upper School Spanish, World Languages Department Chair, Diversity Council, National Spanish Honor Society, 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!"

Allison Shaw

Athletic Trainer

Allison Shaw is entering her second 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!

Kayleigh Smith

Sports Information Director, Varsity Girls Soccer Assistant Coach, Campus Experience Coordinator

Kayleigh Smith is entering her 3rd 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. Coach Smith earned her Bachelor's Degree from Central Baptist College (Conway, AR.) and her Master's Degree from William Woods University (Fulton, MO.).

Monty Smith

Director of Athletics, Head Varsity Volleyball Coach, Junior Varsity Volleyball Coach

Coach Monty Smith has been a coach, leader, role model, and mentor for athletes all over the state of Arkansas for twenty-two years. In his coaching career, Coach Smith has been named Volleyball Coach of the Year eight times, Varsity Girls Basketball Coach of the Year once, and all-around Coach of the Year ten times. Most recently, Coach Smith led the 2019 Wildcat Volleyball team to claim the 3A State Championship, with a 26-2 record.

Coach Smith began working at Episcopal Collegiate 15 years ago as a ninth grade history teacher. Since that time, he has been a Civics Teacher, Advisor, Assistant Athletic Director, Varsity and Middle School Girls Head Basketball Coach, Assistant Softball Coach, Bus Driver, and now the Varsity Girls Head Volleyball Coach and Director of Athletics for Episcopal Collegiate.

Catch Coach Smith on the field, court, track, in the stands or simply walking across campus always ready with a "Go Wildcats" yell!

Andrew Steely

Lower School P.E., Assistant Varsity Football Coach, Head Varsity Wrestling Coach
Coach Steely is a graduate of Ouachita Baptist University, earning a Bachelor's in 2018. He starred as a receiver and defensive back for current Wildcat Head Football Coach Michael Carter at Conway Christian in Conway, Arkansas. Coach Steely later assisted Coach Carter for three years on the varsity football team at Conway Christian.

Samuel Tamo

Sixth Grade History, AP Psychology, Junior Varsity Boys Cross Country Coach, Varsity 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 third year coaching in our Wildcat Cross Country Program with 7th-12th grade male athletes.


Carl Vault

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."

Selby Whitbeck

Assistant to Head of Upper School, Assistant Varsity Cheerleading Coach, 5th/6th Grade Cheerleading

Ms. Selby Whitbeck is entering her 1st year as our Assistant Varsity Cheerleading Coach. 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!

Melissa Wilson-Baker

Learning Specialist, Cheer Program Director, Junior High Cheer Coach, Head Varsity Softball Coach

Melissa Wilson-Baker, a native of North Little Rock, Arkansas is entering her 13th season as the Junior High Cheer Coach at Episcopal. In addition to coaching her cheer team, she is the Spirit Coordinator for both the Junior High and Varsity cheer teams. She will also enter her 3rd 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