The Winston-Salem Prep girls basketball team has had a revolving door of head coaches since it won back-to-back NCHSAA Class 1-A titles in 2015 and 2016.
William Tibbs, who has been hired as the team's next head coach, will be the Phoenix's fifth head coach since Eugene Love resigned in June 2016 to take a coaching position in Ohio. Tibbs replaces Calvin Davis, who was the coach for the past two seasons.
Tibbs actually was hired to replace Love in 2016, but he had to quickly resign be with his parents in New York.
"I think that they need stability on the girls side," said Tibbs, who is the business management and multimedia web design teacher at Wisnton-Salem Prep. "And I'm in the building. I'm the business teacher, so I think that would provide some stability for the girls."
Having a coach, who is also a teacher, was a plus in hiring Tibbs.
"One, is having somebody in the building," Athletics Director Zach Hargett of Prep said of having Tibbs at the school. "That is the case where someone who has already coached basketball, that knows Winston-Salem Prep, that knows the community."
Tibbs' son and daughter, twins Will and Celia, both graduated from Prep.
Since the Phoenix won its second consecutive state championship in 2016, it's had its share of struggles on the court. Prep has won just six games over the past three seasons, including going winless during the 2016-17 season.
Despite the record, Tibbs feels like Davis laid a good enough foundation that he can make improvements.
"He did a good job and I'm going to build on it by having off-season workouts and workouts after school within the time periods that I'm allowed," Tibbs said. "You've just to get in the gym and work. That's how you get better."
It won't be easy to make steady improvements because the Phoenix plays in one of the toughest Class 1-A conferences in the state. Before this past season, the conference had won 13 straight state championships in girls basketball (Bishop McGuinness 2006-14, Winston-Salem Prep 2015-16 and Mount Airy 2017-18). The streak was snapped this year when Pamlico defeated East Surry, which also plays in the Northwest 1-A, in the state championship game.
"This goal is, hopefully we can win the conference," Hargett said. "We want to start out small. And then of course we want to make the playoffs and at least win a couple games in the playoffs."
Tibbs added a couple more goals to what he'd like to see accomplished. He wants to emulate the success that Coach Andre Gould has had as the coach of the boys at Winston-Salem Prep.
"I think we're a family. We have been a family for a while," he said. "And I think that making sure the girls get their grades, making sure we are a family and kind of piggy-back on Coach (Andre) Gould's success. I've been around Coach Gould for a while. I coached the JV boys for six years, I think.
"So I'm familiar with what it takes to get to that top level."