Mercersburg Academy’s Department of Athletics has announced the appointment of three new varsity head coaches for the 2019–2020 academic year. Matt Jacobs (baseball), Timothy Kerr (boys’ lacrosse), and Ryan Tyree (boys’ and girls’ squash) are officially members of the school’s head-coaching roster.
The trio joins Andrew Brown
, who was announced in May as the school’s new head football coach.
Jacobs spent the 2019 season as a Mercersburg assistant under Mike O’Keefe, who departed the Mercersburg faculty at the end of 2018–2019. He played college baseball at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Fla., where he was an integral part of ERU's run of three conference titles and two NAIA National Final Four appearances from 2013 to 2016.
Jacobs was a standout at Lake Brantley High School in Altamonte Springs, Fla., where he batted .445 and earned team MVP honors. He has worked with the Rome Generals of the New York Collegiate Baseball League and in the athletic department at his alma mater. Jacobs has also been an athletic facilities operations assistant at Mercersburg since 2018, and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Embry-Riddle.
“Matt is a young, knowledgeable coach who impressed us this season as an assistant coach with our program—when he really impacted the development of a young team in a positive way,” says Rick Hendrickson, Mercersburg’s director of athletics. “He understands the nuances of the game of baseball as well as the technical skills for reaching higher levels. We think his leadership puts Mercersburg baseball in position to return to another run of success in the Mid-Atlantic Prep League and on the state level.”
Kerr, who will join the Mercersburg faculty as a history teacher, spent six seasons as head coach at Kent Island High School in Stevensville, Md., where he guided the Buccaneers to an 89-24 record, four regional championships, and four state semifinal appearances while coaching 24 future college lacrosse players. He was a social studies teacher at the school from 2006 through this spring and in 2013 became an assistant coach at Washington College (his undergraduate alma mater) in Chestertown, Md. Kerr served as the Shoremen’s defensive coordinator.
Kerr also taught a graduate course in history and served as an academic advisor at Washington College, and has been an assistant coach for the Finland national lacrosse team. He has a bachelor’s degree in history from Washington College and a master’s in administration and leadership from the University of Phoenix.
“We’re excited that Tim made the decision to move back into high-school coaching,” Hendrickson says. “While his experience and knowledge are impressive, ultimately the success of the programs with which he has worked has been the culture that he emphasizes as a foundation. Tim’s vision and his active presence on several levels of lacrosse will enhance our program’s efforts from the start.”
Tyree will become Mercersburg’s director of squash in addition to joining the English faculty (he and current head girls’ varsity coach Mike Sweeney will split duties as head coaches of both teams). Tyree arrives from Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, Mass., where he taught English and served as a dormitory head in addition to holding head-coaching positions in boys’ squash and boys’ tennis (for seven years apiece).
Tyree coached a U.S. Squash Division 6 Nationals-champion team at Williston, and has worked with legendary coach Paul Assaiante’s International Squash Academy summer camps. He previously taught and coached at Eaglebrook School and taught summer-session classes at Northfield Mount Hermon School. Tyree earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Massachusetts, as well as master’s degrees in English literature from Middlebury College’s Bread Loaf School of English and in secondary education from the University of Phoenix.
“We’re committed to expanding our presence in squash, starting with Ryan’s hire,” Hendrickson says. “The Director of Squash will coordinate our efforts to be more involved in U.S. Squash events, including hosting tournaments by 2020-2021. Ryan is a true educator-coach who has come to know the fabric of the squash world very well. He’s worked with the highest-level coaches and world-class players as he’s grown as a coach.”
As head boys’ varsity lacrosse coach, Kerr succeeds Mike Conklin, who has stepped away from coaching following his appointment as Mercersburg’s director of college counseling. Tyree’s predecessor as head boys’ squash coach, Chip Vink ’73, retired this month after 39 years on the Mercersburg faculty, including 19 years as head coach.