Adding to the compliment of coaches that has helped King Baseball enjoy top-notch offenses that have led to 30-win seasons, championship contention, and postseason appearance over the last three seasons is George Laoo. Laoo enters his fifth season as an assistant coach with the Tornado.
The 2013 version of the Tornaod again saw 30 wins and a Conference Carolinas Tournament berth. King was one win away from an NCAA Tournament berth before dropping consecutive games to Coker College. King had five players named second team All-Conference Carolinas.
The Tornado posted a 30-win showing in 2012 during their first year of play in Conference Carolinas and as a full member of NCAA Division II. The Tornado won five of their last six games against the top two teams in their division to propel them into the Conference Carolinas Tournament where they won their first tournament game against Pfeiffer University.
Three players were named to the All-Conference Team in 2012 supporting an offense that finished in the top-3 in the conference in runs scored, triples, home runs, runs batted in, stolen bases, batting average, and slugging percentage. Cory Rhodes led the pitching staff in his All-Conference bid with a 9-2 overall record and finished second in the league with 74 strikeouts in 84.1 innings pitched. That year, the Tornado also earned the Messick Sportsmanship Award, which would be just one a many accolades part of Laoo’s trophy case.
In his first two seasons with the Tornado, Laoo helped construct a lineup that stormed into consecutive NCCAA World Series from 2010-11. In 2011, King was one win away from competing the NCCAA National Championship after going deep into the postseason.
In addition to his duties with the Tornado of King College, Laoo also is an assistant coach for the Tennessee Tornado summer collegiate squad, a southern baseball league located in the Carolinas. The team, based out of Johnson City, Tenn., won the SCBL Championship in 2009 and during Laoo’s time with the team has sent three players on to play professional baseball.
Laoo is a full-time teach at Haynesfield Elementary (Bristol, Tenn.) and was recognized as the one of the district’s top teachers in 2012. The sixth grade math teacher was named 2012 Teacher of the Year at Haynesfield Elementary. Shortly after, he was donned the honor of being the 2012 Teacher of the Year for system elementary teachers and to top it off, was named 2012 Rotary Teacher of the Year.
The Abingdon, Va. native is a 2000 graduate from Emory & Henry College with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science. He earned his master’s degree from East Tennessee State University in teaching in 2008. He played collegiately for Virginia Intermont College from 1995-1997 before transferring to Emory & Henry where he completed his career.
Laoo and his wife Jane live in Bristol (Tenn.) with their two boys, Zion and Killian.