CLINTON, S.C. – Presbyterian College head baseball coach Elton Pollock announced the additions of assistant coach Gil Walker and volunteer assistant coach Marshall McDonald to the program’s coaching staff on Monday.
“It is with great excitement and great anticipation that I announce the hiring of both Gil Walker and Marshall McDonald,” said Pollock. “I developed a relationship with Gil Walker years ago, and I've always felt that he would be an outstanding recruiter at this level. He has been around the game for number of years and brings with him a wealth of knowledge that we look to exploit in our program. He will coach our infielders as we look to take the next step toward a conference championship.
"Marshall McDonald will work with me to implement our hitting philosophy and an offensive approach that works for each guy. In addition, he will coach our catchers and assist with our corner infielders. His confidence and work ethic are second to none. I am extremely excited to have him on board."
Walker comes to PC after spending two seasons as the volunteer assistant coach at his alma mater, Samford University. There he worked primarily with hitters and catchers, while also working with pitchers on arm strength development and recovery. The Bulldogs saw seven players sign professional contracts and seven earn All-Conference honors in Walker’s two seasons with the program.
"I have been extremely fortunate in my short time in this game to have played and coached under excellent men, and this is no different with Coach Elton Pollock,” Walker said. “His leadership style and commitment to his players is something I believe in, and am grateful to be a part of. I'm ready to start investing in our players here at Presbyterian, giving them the best chance at success on the field, in the classroom and in their personal lives."
Prior to his time at Samford, Walker spent two seasons as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Lawson State Community College in Birmingham, Ala., serving under former Blue Hose head coach Doug Kovash. He served as the team’s hitting coach in addition to coaching the team’s infielders and catchers. During his time with the Cougars, 19 players went on to play at four-year schools, including seven at Division I programs, with the team making the conference tournament for the first time in school history in 2015 as the No. 3 seed.
Walker, a native of Birmingham, Ala., capped off his playing career with two seasons at Samford in 2011 and 2012, after two seasons at Wallace State Community College. He was member of the 2012 Bulldog team that is considered one of the best in school history, as they won 41 games en route to a SoCon Championship and an NCAA Tournament Appearance, advancing to the final of the Tallahassee Regional against Florida State. He graduated from Samford in December 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in sports administration. His father, Tommy Walker, was inducted in to the Alabama Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 2014.
McDonald comes to PC after four seasons at Catawba Valley Community College in Hickory, N.C., including three as hitting coach. There he led the team to a school record for home runs in each of his three seasons as a full-time coach, culminating with 63 last season compared to just 13 prior to his arrival. He coached the NJCAA National Player of the Year Chandler Jenkins, who batted .460 with 18 home runs and 74 RBIs last season, and two Region 10 Players of the Year in Jenkins and Ty Andrus.
"It is an honor to join the PC staff,” McDonald said. “I am looking forward to working and learning alongside Coach Pollock and the rest of the staff. I could not be more grateful for this opportunity."
McDonald has also spent time coaching in the collegiate summer leagues throughout the past three seasons. He served as associate head coach of the Statesville Owls in 2015, head coach of the Lenoir Oilers in 2016 and assistant coach for Lexington County Blowfish in 2017. McDonald led the Oilers to the CVCL Championship as the head coach in 2016, as the team compiled a 39-17 record and led the league in home runs (50), doubles (112) and RBIs (357).
As a player, McDonald spent one season at Catawba Valley Community College, earning All-Region X honors, before playing his final two seasons at Montreat College. As a Cavalier, McDonald was named a team captain as a senior and earned a spot on the Appalachian Athletic Conference All-Academic team as a junior. The native of Red Springs, N.C. graduated from Montreat in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in communications.