Seth Wheeler will be in his first season as head coach at Emporia State in 2018-19, but it will be his fourth season on the coaching staff for the Hornets.
Wheeler has spent the last three seasons as the pitching coach at Emporia State and has worked with the catchers as well. The Hornets have the second best ERA in the conference at 4.60 over his three seasons after ranking sixth in the league in 2014. Emporia State has gone 110-52 with three trips to the NCAA Tournament and an MIAA regular season championship with Wheeler in the dugout.
"I've had a chance to watch Coach Wheeler over the past three seasons," said Weiser. "He carries himself with a maturity beyond his years and that really came out during the interview process. I look forward to him carrying on the tradition of Hornet baseball."
He began his coaching career with the Junction City Brigade, a collegiate wood bat team that competes in the Mid-Plains League, the summer after graduating from Central Missouri. Wheeler served as the hitting coach as the team went 26-10, won the MPL and led the league in runs per game. During the school year he was an assistant coach at Butler CC. He was in charge of catchers and base running for the Grizzlies who led the NJCAA in stolen bases with 157 on the season.
From 2015-17 Wheeler served as the head coach of the Junction City Brigade. The Brigade won the MPL regular season and tournament titles in 2016 were runners up in both during the 2017 season. His first year in Junction City the team went 22-15 and Wheeler was selected to be the All Star Game manager. While head coach of the Brigade, three of his players were selected in the Major League Baseball Amateur Draft - Max Brown in the 37th round by the Arizona Diamondbacks, Ethan Skender in the 31st round by the Cincinnati Reds and Josh Rolette in the 18th round by the St. Louis Cardinals.
A 2014 graduate of Central Missouri, Wheeler was an honorable mention All-MIAA selection at catcher for the Mules. He hit .324 as UCM won the MIAA Regular Season Championship his senior year. He played two years at Butler CC, earning All-Jayhawk Conference honors as a sophomore.
Bret Schwartz will be in his first season as an assistant coach at Emporia State in 2018-19.
Schwartz has spent the past five years as an assistant varsity coach and history teacher for Blue Springs HS in Blue Springs, Mo. Over that time, he served as the primary infield coach and worked with hitters. Coach Schwartz recently coached Caleb Marquez, a 39th round draft choice of the Milwaukee Brewers.
A 2012 graduate of Central Missouri, Schwartz started every game at shortstop for the Mules from 2009-2012. Over that period, he was a part of two teams that earned College World Series berths. He was the MIAA Freshman of the Year in 2009, an NCAA Division II All-American in 2011, and the MIAA Player of the Year and a Rawlings Gold Glove Winner in 2012. In the summer of 2010, Schwartz was named the Alaska Baseball League Player of the Year while playing for the Matsu Miners. He graduated as the MIAA career and single season leader in assists, career leader in HBP, and career leader in sacrifices. Schwartz finished his career with 306 hits, one of three players in conference history to amass the 300 hit total. He currently sits second in career runs scored and seventh in career RBI's in the MIAA.
Schwartz, a native of Blue Springs, Mo., is married to the former Kelsie Hanson of Olathe, Kan.