WINTERVILLE—East Carolina University announced Friday that Pitt Community College Baseball Coach Tommy Eason has been selected for induction into its Athletics Hall of Fame in recognition of his achievements as a Pirates catcher and assistant baseball coach.
Eason, who took the helm of PCC's baseball program in the summer of 2005, was elected to the ECU Athletics Hall of Fame by a 12-member committee July 29. He and three other Pirate standouts – Luke Fisher, Diane Parker and Jenny Parsons – will be formally enshrined Sept. 9, during the university's 39th installment ceremony in Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum.
Eason and his fellow inductees will also be recognized publicly at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium Sept. 10, during halftime of the ECU-N.C. State football game.
An interactive video listing and capsules of the entire Hall of Fame membership is located inside the lobby of the Smith-Williams Center, which opened in 2013. Photos of all Hall of Fame members are on permanent display, and Eason and his fellow 2016 shrine class members will be added to the display for Hall of Fame Weekend, Sept 9-10.
Including the four new inductees, membership in the ECU Athletics Hall of Fame now stands at 158. The original HOF was initiated in 1974 as an organization to honor those individuals who have, by direct participation in ECU intercollegiate athletics, brought outstanding recognition to themselves and the university.
A Snow Hill native, Eason (1989-91) was a two-time First-Team All-Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) selection and led the Pirates to three-straight conference titles and NCAA regional appearances as a player. During the 1990 season, he batted .366 and led the CAA in home runs (17) and RBI (62). He finished his ECU career ranked second all-time in home runs (39), third in total bases (354) and fourth in RBI (155) with a .335 batting average and, in 2010, was named to the CAA Baseball Silver Anniversary Team by a panel of current and former coaches.
After being selected by the Philadelphia Phillies in the sixth round (pick 162) of the 1991 Major League Baseball Draft, Eason spent four seasons in the minor leagues, hitting .285 with 30 home runs and 145 RBI, before returning to ECU to complete his bachelor's degree.
A member of ECU Coach Keith LeClair's first staff as a graduate assistant in 1998, Eason was elevated to pitching coach the following year and served in that capacity for seven seasons. During his tenure, East Carolina made six consecutive NCAA regional appearances and advanced to a pair of super regionals. Five pitchers earned All-America honors under Eason's tutelage, and his pitching staffs finished among the NCAA leaders in earned run average three times.
In 11 seasons as the head coach of the Bulldogs, Eason has tallied a 372-174 (68 percent) record and four conference tournament titles – 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2016.
In 2010, Eason earned NJCAA Eastern District Coach of the Year honors as he led his team to the NJCAA Division I Baseball World Series, the PCC baseball program's first-ever trip to Grand Junction, Colo.
Approximately 90 of the Bulldogs Eason has coached have furthered their playing careers at the NCAA and/or professional level, including two – Lonnie Chisenhall and Jeff Ferrell – who reached the Major Leagues.