PRESS RELEASE - Porter-Gaud Athletics Department
When the SCISA state track meet ends on May 3 at Heathwood Hall in Columbia, the Cyclones will have their first coaching change in 15 years. Hugh Knight, the Cyclones’ head cross-country coach since 2003, will take over the track and field team, as well.
In one sense, it’s the end of an era. But in another, it is business as usual. When the SCISA state track meet ends on May 3 at Heathwood Hall in Columbia, the Cyclones will have their first coaching change in 15 years. Hugh Knight, the Cyclones’ head cross-country coach since 2003, will take over the track and field team, as well. He succeeds Larry Salley, who will become Porter-Gaud’s athletic director effective July 1. The transition should be a smooth one, as Knight has served as assistant track coach for the last 11 years, while Salley has been Knight’s cross-country assistant every fall.
Previous coverage: Salley builds Porter-Gaud program into one of SCISA’s best
“My first act as AD was to fire myself,” Salley said. “With 59 total teams in the program, it was obvious that I would need to step back from the head coaching role. But Hugh’s first act was to hire me back to coach sprints and relays. We have worked so closely together in the past decade that the cross-country and track teams are already effectively one team with two seasons.”
That approach has paid dividends in recent years, as the running program at Porter-Gaud has enjoyed unprecedented success. Knight’s boys’ cross-country teams have won the last 4 consecutive SCISA state championships, while Salley’s track teams have won boys’ SCISA state titles in 2001, 2011, 2012, and 2013, and a girls’ championship in 2001. Their athletes have combined to break 30 Porter-Gaud school records and 6 SCISA state records.
Coach Salley says, “We both love setting records—whether it’s a state record or a JV athlete’s personal best. And records are made to be broken. That goes for coaching, as well. It is going to be a lot of fun watching Hugh take this team to the next level.”