Photo: Larry Foster recently stepped down as Etowah High baseball coach. (Mike Goodson/Messenger)
By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor
Larry Foster recently retired as Etowah High baseball coach for a second time.
The hall of fame coach submitted his resignation at the June 26 meeting of the Attalla City School Board.
After becoming head baseball coach in May of 2012, Foster guided the Blue Devils to five state playoff berths over the next six seasons. His 2017 squad made the state quarterfinals.
“From the moment I moved to Attalla, I recognized that Coach Foster was a key component of Etowah baseball,” said EHS Principal Stephen Hall. “We’re grateful for all that he’s done for Attalla City Schools, Etowah High School and Etowah [High School] baseball, and he’s not someone who’ll be easily replaced.”
As head coach at Etowah from 1981 to 2004, Foster guided the Blue Devils to a 520-209 record while winning state championships in 1985, 1987 and 1996. Etowah qualified for the state playoffs 18 times under Foster during that span.
Although he’d like to get a new coach in place as soon as possible, Hall stressed that there was no timetable to hire for Foster’s replacement.
“We need to find a strong coach who is a good fit for our community and who is going to exemplify and support our core values of both Attalla City Schools and Eto-wah High School. It’s going to take some time, so we don’t want to rush and get it wrong.
“We’ve got some good assistant coaches who are taking up the mantle right now and making sure that the support for our parents and kids remains until we find that right person. It’s very early in the process right now, and we’d like to adequately vet candidates for the position before we put ourselves on any specific course.”
Foster played football and baseball at Etowah High, earning All-State honors in both sports. After graduating in 1970, he signed a baseball scholarship with Jacksonville State University, where he played under Rudy Abbott. Foster was selected as an NAIA All-America player in 1971 and earned NCAA All-America honors in 1973. He then played professional baseball in the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals organizations from 1973-78.
Foster was inducted into the JSU Hall of Fame in 1985 and the Etowah County Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. He is also a member of the Alabama Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
Foster was unavailable for comment at press time.