Hamilton’s Legacy Honored

Northgate’s baseball field is dedicated to our former head coach Greg Hamilton.

Hamilton's Legacy Honored

Robyn Clarke and Ansley Berry

Last month, Northgate’s baseball field was dedicated to former coach Greg Hamilton, because, in addition to starting Northgate’s baseball program, he had several successful seasons and earned respect in the community, according to Northgate athletic director Eric Fiske. Hamilton coached the Vikings for nineteen years, earning 401 wins and making sixteen playoff appearances. His winning career included eight region titles and two Final Four appearances; in addition, he was the state runner-up in 2004, and he led Northgate to the state title in 2009. As it says on the plaque commemorating the field’s dedication, “He built the program from the ground up by pouring his time and love into his players.”

Fiske cites Hamilton’s “passion for his athletes, dedication to the sport, (and) his willingness to always mentor kids in need” as the qualities which set him apart from others. He also believes that Hamilton’s legacy is the way he built a solid foundation and program, yet “still (touches) the lives of his former players today.” Former player Dylan Thompson adds,  “(Hamilton) left a program that had winning in its blood, and…. left something that is only going to keep getting better in the future with Coach Herrington in the lead now.”

Another former player, Ryan Kovacs (of the great 2007 team), says of his former coach, “He demanded your very best, every single day, no matter what…whether it was hitting, pitching, or even filling up the water cooler and chasing foul balls. You were expected to give it your all.” He also mentioned that Coach Hamilton created special bonds with each of his players, that stretched well beyond the baseball field. “Off the field, he was, and still is, like a father figure to us. He repeatedly told us, if there was anything we ever needed, to come to him.”

Current pitcher for the San Francisco Giants, Will Smith, who played for Northgate from 2004 to 2007, also talks about the way Coach Hamilton cared about his players beyond the field. “He wanted to be sure we were good people off the field too, and that’s something a lot of us took (seriously) and still do.” He goes on to say Coach Hamilton and former coach Kevin Henderson “helped a lot of young men out including myself to be successful in life. He loved the game, he loved his family, and he loved Northgate baseball. He will be (remembered) for a long time around that stadium (because) he has touched so many lives along the way.”

Coach Hamilton pictured with former players (l-r) Will Smith (of the San Francisco Giants), Coach Hamilton, Casey Wilson, and Ryan Kovacs.