Joyce, Sims and Walker get call for NJCAA Hall
Three men who are no strangers to Grand Junction will be inducted into the NJCAA Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in May.
Lon Joyce, Scott Sims and Cam Walker will be honored at the Alpine Bank Junior College World Series banquet May 25 at Two Rivers Convention Center.
Joyce, the former head coach at Spartanburg (S.C.) Methodist, won seven conference titles, five regional titles and made two JUCO World Series appearances between 1978-91.
A four-time Region 10 coach of the year and two-time Eastern District coach of the year, Joyce compiled a 473-170 record and sent 115 players to four-year colleges or universities.
He had six players reach the major leagues, with 45 of his players signing professional contracts.
He’s now a full-time scout for the Los Angeles Dodgers, receiving the Larry Sutton Scout of the Year award from the Dodgers in 2001 and was the Professional Baseball Representatives Scout of the Year in 2007.
Joyce was inducted into the Professional Baseball Scouts Hall of Fame in 2008 and the Spartanburg Methodist Hall of Fame in 1991. The school has retired his No. 21 jersey.
Sims visited Grand Junction last year, bringing his South Georgia College team to JUCO for the first time since 1970.
In his 21 seasons (1990-2011) as head coach, Sims won 589 games and reached the postseason 18 times, including 16 consecutive years. Eighteen of his players were drafted and one, Jason Childers, reached the major leagues.
Sims retired after reaching the JUCO World Series last season. The Tigers went 1-2 and won the Homa Thomas Sportsmanship Award.
South Georgia College recently announced that a foundation scholarship will be named in Sims’ honor.
Walker’s Indian Hills (Iowa) Community College teams have reached the JUCO World Series seven times since 1993 and the Falcons have averaged more than 40 wins a season during his tenure.
Walker coached in his 1,000th game during the 2009-10 season and has a 746-359 record entering this season, his 20th.
A former player at Indian Hills, Walker’s best finish at JUCO is third, in 1998. He’s been the regional coach of the year eight times and six times has been the ABCA coach of the year.
Tickets for the JUCO banquet will so on sale in April. The 55th annual JUCO World Series is May 26-June 2 at Suplizio Field.