ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa. -- Adam Scheibley's passion for Elizabethtown College baseball was on display each time he took the field for the Blue Jays as a student-athlete. He'll get to rekindle that passion in a new role after being announced as the 10th head coach in program history, Friday afternoon.
"The time I spent as a student-athlete and assistant coach at Elizabethtown is something that has had a lasting impact on my life," said Sheibley. "I want to thank [director of athletics] Chris Morgan and the search committee for providing me the opportunity to help guide all members of the Blue Jay baseball program through their collegiate careers both on and off the field. Elizabethtown baseball has enjoyed a lot of success in recent years and I am excited to get to know all the members of the program and start working towards continuing that success."
Sheibley transitioned from player-to-coach at Elizabethtown, where he spent two seasons as an assistant under former head coach and current Middletown High School athletic director Cliff Smith in 2011 and 2012. The Landisburg, Pennsylvania, native linked up with Matt Jones, another coach with Blue Jay ties, as an assistant at Shippensburg from 2013-15, before landing his first head coaching job at Landmark Conference rival Juniata College, where he'd been for the last two seasons.
"We are pleased to welcome Adam Scheibley back to campus as our head baseball coach," said Morgan. "It was evident the moment Adam arrived for his on-campus interview that he was at the top of a very competitive baseball candidate pool. His passion and enthusiasm for Elizabethtown College and our baseball program are contagious. Adam is a role model and will be a great addition to our athletic department and the College as a whole. I look forward to working with him as he leads our baseball team forward."
Sheibley was in the process of trying to transform a Juniata program that produced seven straight losing seasons prior to his arrival in 2016, but it was a process that did not come without hardships. Inheriting a team from the previous staff, Sheibley took the Eagles to nine victories in his first season.
This past spring, Juniata's roster featured 17 underclassmen, including 14 freshmen, and was void of a senior. Despite their inexperience, the Eagles improved throughout the year and were challenging some of the Landmark's best by the end of the season. Juniata shut out a Catholic team that had the top regular season record in the conference, played three tight games against No. 2 seed Susquehanna and forced the eventual league champion Blue Jays to use late-inning heroics to avoid a doubleheader sweep.
Sheibley worked closely with the infielders and outfielders and served as recruiting coordinator for Jones at Shippensburg. Jones was Elizabethtown's coach from 2000-06 and coached Sheibley as a freshman. The Raiders won 25 games or more in each of Sheibley's three seasons on staff, going 86-65 overall, with an NCAA Division II Atlantic Region championship and NCAA Division II World Series appearance in 2013.
As an assistant at Elizabethtown, Sheibley helped his alma mater to 39 victories and two berths in the MAC Commonwealth Conference Championships.
Sheibley's numbers as a player at Elizabethtown from 2006-09 put him among the Blue Jay greats. He holds program career records in triples (23), stolen bases (95) and games played (158). His 162 runs scored and 568 at-bats also stood as program records before Kyle Fackler '17 surpassed them this past season. Sheibley remains second in both categories along with ranking second in runs batted in (115), second in bases on balls (94) and tied for fourth in hits (178).
A three-time All-MAC Commonwealth Conference selection and 2009 ABCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region Second Team honoree, Sheibley is one of only two players in program history to be named conference Rookie of the Year (2006) and Player of the Year (2009). He played on three MAC Commonwealth Conference championship teams (2006, 2008 and 2009) and is a veteran of nine NCAA Division III Championship tournament games.
The former infielder turned outfielder led the country in stolen bases (51) and stolen bases per game (1.16) during his senior year. His 23 career triples are tied for the fifth most in Division III history, while his 12 triples in 43 games as a freshman in 2006 rank tied for sixth in a single season.
"What first drew me to Elizabethtown as a student-athlete was the academic reputation," explained Sheibley. "It is a highly-regarded institution that provides a personalized education for all students. Along with the academic reputation, the baseball program's tradition of success and excellence drew me to the College. I'm excited and thankful for the chance to return to an institution that has already given me so much."
Sheibley received his Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from Elizabethtown in 2009, and earned a Master of Science in sport management from California University of Pennsylvania in 2015.
"I look forward to building upon the successes the program has achieved in recent years," stated Sheibley. "Coach Smith did an amazing job maximizing the potential of the student-athletes he coached and it is a hallmark of the program that I want to carry forward in helping our players develop on and off the field."