Stephen Cook has been named the new head boys basketball coach at Hamilton Heights Christian Academy.
Zach Ferrell is taking a new position as assistant coach at Eastern Florida State College.
Officials said, "For a small private school located inside the heart of Tennessee, Hamilton Heights Christian Academy (HHCA) has continued to deliver vastly oversized results in its ongoing quest to expand its stellar reputation for maintaining a “culture of excellence” in education and sports that has attracted nationwide attention and acclaim.
"The 'Small School with a Big Christian Heart' has consistently produced boy and girl championship basketball teams for close to two decades now.
In addition to graduating alumni NBA players Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and his cousin Nickeil Alexander Walker, the boys’ basketball team ended the 2019-2020 season with an overall 28-3 record. The boys’ team was ranked #1 in the State of Tennessee and 11th nationwide
"The girls’ basketball team has enjoyed an equivalent stature and reputation. Under the outstanding tutelage of Coach Keisha Hunt, the school produced two All Americans last season The team ended the 2019-2020 season with a 25-1 record and was ranked #1 girls team in the State of Tennessee and 2nd nationwide. Coach Hunt was nominated as a Coach of the Year, and will be returning next season.
"To hear departing star basketball coach Zach Ferrell explain it: “Our mission of using basketball to impact the world for Christ has remained true since my very first day. I am so thankful to be a small part of a program that was able to accomplish so much. In the past seven years we have had 24 players go on to play collegiate basketball, 4 players playing professionally, won 4 NACA Division 1 National Championships, finished in the Top 25 in the country 3 years and in the Top 10 this past season. I want to personally thank everyone who has ever been involved with Hamilton Heights Christian Academy for giving me this opportunity of a lifetime to mold the character and talents of the young people I’ve worked with to become the true champions they’ve become.”
"Though Coach Ferrell will now be moving on to become Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at Eastern Florida State College, in order to continue to break new ground in standards of excellence for the school, Hamilton Heights Christian Academy decided to hire an elite new basketball coach who intends to carry on and amplify the work and achievements of Coach Ferrell..
"Incoming Coach Stephen Cook developed an elite reputation for having spent more than sixyears coaching, training and raising up young athletes to realize their peak potential. His coaching accomplishment include: - Three consecutive TSSAA State Tournament Appearances – (2014, 2015, 2016; TSSA Class AA State Tournament Finals Runner-Up – 2016; and AAU National Champions 17U, D1 - 2017."
Coach Cook said, “I intend to use my knowledge of the game of basketball to help current student athletes both on and off the basketball court. I will be able to use my basketball knowledge and skills in developing student athletes into the kind of champions and citizens they aspire to be. As a God-loving man, I will be able to carry out the mission and message that God places upon my heart. He will be the forefront of what the program is about.”
Between the boys and girls teams, recent Hamilton Heights graduates have gone on to further receive full athletic scholarships worth over $2,500,000 this year, awarded by: University of Central Arkansas, Syracuse University, Tennessee Wesleyan University, Mississippi State University, University of Kentucky, University of Ohio, University of Florida, Iowa State University and, University of New Mexico.