By Robert Wilson

       Wingfield High and Mississippi College alumnus and former longtime Mississippi College baseball coach and Biloxi High athletic director Tom Gladney has led his Houston Christian School team to their conference championship in his first year in Houston.

       Gladney retired after 13 years as athletic director at Biloxi High and moved to Houston to be closer to his granddaughter and started coaching at Houston Christian this year.

       Gladney and his team play Episcopal High Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth for the conference championship. He has led Houston Christian to a 23-7 record, the most wins in nine years, the last time Houston won the conference championship.

       There for 15 teams in the conference, seven Class 4A teams (Houston is one of those), and eight Class 3A teams.

       Houston is playing for the 4A title. Houston lost to Episcopal 8-7 in 11 innings in its only meeting in the regular season.

       Houston Christian has about 450 students in high school and would be a MAIS Class 6A school if it was in Mississippi.

       Gladney and his wife Cindy have two daughters, Monica Lee who lives in Houston, and Hope, who lives in Metairie, La. They have one grandchild, Lyla June White (who is 17 months old and daughter of Monica Lee and Bryan White). Tom and Cindy live five and a half miles from them.

       Gladney was at MC for 20 years, the first five years as assistant football and baseball coach and the last 15 years head baseball coach where he won 336 games playing most of those years in the Division II Gulf South Conference. After leaving MC, Gladney was baseball coach for 10 years at Midway High in Waco, Texas and six years as assistant football coach and four years as middle school athletic coordinator. He won 284 games, including the 2003 Class 4A state title and a 2005 Class 4A runner-up finish. Gladney then spent 13 years as AD at Biloxi High where the athletic program won 53 district championships, six South State championships and one state championship.

       Gladney is a member of five Hall of Fames, MC Sports, Midway Sports, Wingfield High, Crossroads Diamond Club and Mississippi Semi-Pro Baseball.

       He has been a scout for the Boston Red Sox, Kansas City Royals, Colorado Rockies and now with the Milwaukee Brewers.