Alford Resigns as Lady Pirates Coach

PONCE DE LEON GIRLS BASKETBALL HEAD COACH TIM ALFORD is retiring after 23 seasons.

By PATRICK CASEY

Tim Alford resigned from his position as the head coach of the Ponce de Leon
girls basketball team last Thursday after 23 seasons at the helm of the program.
“It’s time,” Alford said during a phone interview on Friday morning. “I talked to
my wife about it, we have some things we would like to do and now seemed like a good
time to step aside. It’s been a great run, so many great kids have come through here and
it has been a privilege to coach them, watch them grow, graduate and start families of
their own.”

In 23 seasons, Alford posted a record of 493-189 at the school, and, with a 13-
13 season at Poplar Springs in 1992-93, he leaves 24 years as a varsity head coach
with 506 wins against 202 losses.

The Lady Pirates won state championships under Alford in 1999-2000 with a
record of 27-9 and again at the end of the 2011-12 season when the squad posted a 28-
2 mark.

South Walton head girls basketball coach Kevin Craig added on Saturday, “A

class guy. I have enjoyed competing against his teams in one of the tougher
environments that you can take your team into (PDL).”

Alford coached his squads to 13 district championships in 23 years as a head
coach at his alma mater (PDL Class of 1986) and his squad won nine straight district
championships from the 2004-05 season through the 2012-13 season.

The Lady Pirates finished the 2017-18 season with a 19-9 mark, losing to
county rival Holmes County in Bonifay in the first round of the Class A state playoffs
back on Feb. 15.

The varsity girls basketball program won 20 games in 16 of his 23 seasons at

the school.

Current Walton head girls basketball coach Brad West had this to add: “As an
alumnus of Ponce de Leon and the uncle of one of his players (senior guard Taylor
West) it is disappointing to see Coach Alford retire from coaching. He has done a great
job improving numerous young ladies as people as well as basketball players. To reach
500 wins is an amazing accomplishment and a testament to the hard work and
dedication he has put into his job. I appreciate all the help he has give me over the years
and will miss seeing him on the sideline.”

Alford will remain at Ponce de Leon as a teacher and as Athletic Director for the

immediate future as the administration begins to look for a new coach.

Assistant coach Laurie Tinsley, who also played for Alford in the early 2000s,
was asked about interest in the vacancy but replied, “We’re a team, I may still coach the
middle school girls, though.” She also added, “I have to be the most privileged of the 73
Lady Pirates that had the opportunity to finish as a Lady Pirate because I also had the
opportunity to coach beside the great Coach Alford.”

Freeport girls basketball coach Mike Myrick, who wrapped up his 20th season
as the Bulldogs leader in 2017-18 said, “Coach Alford will be remembered for his love of
his players and love of the game. His drive to be the best and the competitiveness of his
teams will be remembered by all that coached against him. I hope the best for him in
whatever he now decides to do.”

Former Walton and Ponce de Leon veteran basketball coach Jerry Hester
texted, “One of the best of all-time, loved competing against and watching his teams.”

Current Crestview girls basketball coach Steve Williams, who coached against

Alford for six seasons while at Paxton added, “A true legend.”