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Monroe High School coach Johnny Sowell recognized by NCHSAA

Monroe High School Coach Johnny Sowell became a coach at Monroe High School in 1990. (Photo courtesy of The Enquirer Journal). Below, Sowell is recognized by the Union County Board of Education for receiving the Homer Thompson Memorial award. Also pictured is Board Chairman John Collins.

To be a great coach, it’s not just about taking home the winning trophy, it’s about the steps it takes to get there.

Monroe High School Coach Johnny Sowell has been classified by many as a great coach evidenced by the numerous recognitions he has received since taking the title of coach at Monroe High School in 1990.

His most recent recognition came Thursday (May 7, 2015) when he was selected as one of the winners of the Homer Thompson Memorial “Eight Who Make A Difference” award. Sowell was selected for Region 6.

According to a statement from the North Carolina High School Athletic Association, Sowell was chosen for the award because he “exemplifies the qualities of sportsmanship and citizenship.”

“Coach Sowell is one of those rare finds in high school athletics today,” said Union County Public Schools Athletic Director Doug Jones. “In today's world coaches concentrate on one sport. Johnny still coaches three and doesn't short change any. His dedication to his players is surpassed by nobody. He continues to be a great role model not just for our kids, but for the younger coaches.” 

He was recognized with the Homer Thompson Memorial award for his sportsmanship, dedication and commitment to athletics during the NCHSAA’s annual meeting in Chapel Hill.

The award, which is sponsored by the NC Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, is named in honor of the late Homer Thompson, the long-time Winston-Salem Parkland coach and member of the NCHSAA Hall of Fame. 

Sowell is the head football coach, the head men’s basketball coach, the head men’s track and field coach at Monroe High School.

After winning a state title as a player at Monroe High in the 1979-80 school year, Sowell coached the Redhawks to a state crown 30 years later in 2010. He was chosen as the male state coach of the year by the NCHSAA in 2011.

He also reached a milestone on Jan. 11, 2013, when he led the Monroe High School Redhawks' to a 64-26 victory over Union Academy, marking the 400th victory of his career.

Sowell has been referred to as a selfless leader, who puts a heavy focus on academics and is quick to credit those around him for the basketball program's success.

Written by: Deb Coates Bledsoe - UCPS Communications Coordinator
Posted: May 07, 2015 by Deb Coates Bledsoe

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