The Launching Pad (TLP) will continue to update Instructors biographical information as we add them to our services.


            Carl Lancaster

Carl Lancaster's first year as University of Mount Olive's head baseball coach was in 1987, just seven years after the baseball program had been resurrected at the school. In 2015, Lancaster became only the 14th NCAA Division II head baseball coach overall to reach the career 1,000-win mark.

The 2017 season marked Lancaster's 31st year at the helm of the program. Lancaster's squad reached the NCAA DII Southeast Regional for the eighth-straight year, while capturing the Trojans' 15th conference tournament championship.

On March 24, 2015, the Trojans defeated eventual national runner-up Catawba College 12-10 for Lancaster's 1,000th win. Lancaster is one of only five active Division II baseball coaches with at least 1,000 wins.

Lancaster has a career record of 1,018-440-1 for a .698 winning percentage. He has the 14th highest career winning percentage among all Division II baseball coaches and he ranks 15th in career victories.

In 2008, Lancaster guided the Trojans to the NCAA Division II Baseball National Championship, Mount Olive's first-ever national championship in any sport. Mount Olive posted an overall record of 58-6 and won three straight elimination games to capture the South Atlantic Regional Championship. The Trojans were a perfect 4-0 at the National Finals, including a come-from-behind 6-5 walk-off win over Ouachita Baptist University in the opening round in which Mount Olive scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth for the victory. The Trojans defeated Ouachita Baptist 6-2 in the Championship Game, which was televised nationally on CBS Sports Network.

The American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) selected Lancaster as the Division II Baseball National Coach of the Year in 2008.

Mount Olive reached the NCAA II National Finals again in 2011, finishing in a third-place tie. In addition, the Trojans advanced to the NAIA World Series in 1992.

Lancaster was named the 2015 Conference Carolinas Baseball Coach of the Year, winning the award for the fifth year in a row and 11th time overall. The Trojans posted a 39-16 overall record and won the regular-season conference title with a 19-7 mark. Mount Olive was ranked as high as No. 2 in the Collegiate Baseball Top 30 Poll during the 2015 season.

Mount Olive was the No. 2 seed in the 2015 NCAA Division II Southeast Regional. The Trojans have earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament in nine of the last 10 years, including each year since 2010. Mount Olive reached the NCAA Tournament in each of the first five years that the school reclassified to NCAA Division II (1996-2000).

Under Lancaster, Mount Olive has had three Division II Baseball National Player of the Year winners: Erik Lovett (2007 Daktronics Player of the Year), Carter Capps (2011 ABCA Player of the Year, 2011 ABCA Pitcher of the Year, 2011 Daktronics Pitcher of the Year, 2011 NCBWA Pitcher of the Year) and Geno Escalante (2013 ABCA Gold Glove Defensive Player of the Year.) The Trojans have also had 31 NCAA Division II All-Americans.

At least one Trojan player was selected in the Major League Baseball Draft each year from 1997-2015. Most recently three Trojans were selected in 2015 Draft: Jason Morozowski (13th round/Arizona Diamondbacks), Hunter Barnett (32nd round/Toronto Blue Jays) and Gunnar Kines (39th round/Miami Marlins).

Two former UMO pitchers were called up to the Majors in 2012, Carter Capps and Tom (Tommy) Layne. Capps pitched for the Seattle Mariners during 2012 and 2013 before being traded to the Miami Marlins in 2014. Layne spent two years with the San Diego Padres before signing as a free agent with the Boston Red Sox. Layne was called up to the Majors midway through the 2014 season. Both Capps and Layne have seen considerable action during the 2015 season.

Lancaster earned his undergraduate degree at UNC-Wilmington and earned his master's in physical education from Appalachian State University, where he served as a graduate assistant coach.

Prior to attending UNC-Wilmington, Lancaster earned his associate's degree at Chowan Junior College (now Chowan University). In 2014, Lancaster was inducted into the Chowan University Athletics Hall of Fame.

Lancaster and his wife, Robbie, were married in 1980. The couple has four children: Jesse, Nolan, Leslie and Lee Anna. Both Jesse and Nolan played baseball for their father at Mount Olive.

Hailey Sellers


  • 8 Years of Travel Ball experience, including pitching, hitting & fielding

  • Played Collegiate Softball at the D2 Level at Newberry College

  • 10+ years of teaching pitching and hitting lessons

  • 6+ years of teaching after retiring from college ball


Influential Coaches (Coaches who coached me):

  • Beverly Smith- Head Softball Coach at the University of South Carolina, previously the University of North Carolina Pitching Coach

  • Micheal Bastian- USA Olympics Pitching Instructor, has worked with Jenny Finch and others on the Olympic Level, Head Coach for China Olympic Team in Bejing 2010, Owner at The Fastpitch School.

  • Cheri Kempf- Pitching Instructor, National Team Player, Member of National Pro Fastpitch, Owner & Operator at Club K

  • Joseph Elston- Head Coach at Newberry College

  • Lisa Navas- Previous University of North Carolina Hitting Instructor, currently Asst Coach at University of South Carolina.

  • Yvette Hendrian- Pitched for University of North Carolina, coached at the Dominators Fastpitch organization, Pitching Instructor

  • “Chief”- Elite Pitching Instructor, Winston Salem

  • Marci Turso- Head Coach at Cobras Fastpitch, Charlotte

  • Rodney Threat- Head Coach at Lady Blues Fastpitch, Charlotte

  • Robert Powell- Team TFS Head Coach and Pitching Instructor


         Shawn Hicks

Shawn graduated from the University of Mount Olive in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science.  There, he was a part of the baseball program and had the privilege of playing under the direction of Carl Lancaster.  After college, Shawn had an opportunity with the Boston Red Sox organization but was plagued by shoulder injuries.  He returned to professional baseball as a Strength and Conditioning Coach spending five years between the Atlanta Braves and the Kansans City Royals organizations.  Shawn still helps athletes from a distance by providing training programs through phone calls and emails. 


“I’m excited to join the Launching Pad Team and looking forward to improving the athletic talent in the area.”


    Johnny Narron

Johnny played baseball for East Carolina University while studying Physical Performance and Kinesiology. He played in the minor leagues with the NY Yankees, and Chicago White Sox.  Narron started coaching with the Milwaukee Brewers in Player Development and later served as the Hitting Coordinator for the Los Angeles Angels. Johnny coached in the Major Leagues for 8 Years as a hitting coach with Cincinnati, Texas, and Milwaukee. Narron coached 12 MLB AllStars  and 4 MLB MVP’s. While with Texas, Narron coached in the 2010 World Series, the 2011 AllStar Game and 2011 World Series. Johnny has worked with the Cleveland Indians Player Development Department as an advisor and affiliate coach since 2017.

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    Mike Van Horn

Mike is currently an Assistant Softball Coach at Division 2 Barton College where he focuses on hitting/pitching and also works with catchers and infielders. Coach Van Horn operates Tier One Fastpitch where he organizes and hosts competitive Fastpitch tournaments as well as college exposure events and clinics. At Tier One, Mike has worked along side other collegiate coaches at his clinics to provide instruction to bring athletes to the next highest level.

Prior to Barton College and Tier One, Mike coached teams in two different highly successful travel ball organizations, the Johnston County Clippers and Wayne County Hurricanes during a 10 year period.  Bringing those teams to seven state championships, a respectful third place World Series finish, and a National Championship