Just two days after athletics director Neal McCarty announced he was stepping down, Beaufort Academy has found his successor.
BA announced Wednesday that Nick Field will take over the role, inheriting an athletics program that is coming off one of the most successful years in its history.
“I am very excited to be joining the Beaufort Academy family and serve as their athletic director,” Field said. “Neal McCarty has left some very big shoes to fill, but has also laid a solid foundation for me to build on.”
Field was hired as an assistant basketball coach earlier this summer but will now add athletic director and head of facilities maintenance to his title. A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Field has coached at Riverview Charter School and Beaufort High School, as well as with the Bluffton Bulls AAU program and the Beaufort Hustle AAU program, which he founded.
“Nick Field brings a strong background and love for athletics and its potential to help develop hardworking and team-oriented young people,” Head of School Dr. Dan Durbin said. “Although we will miss the leadership of Neal McCarty, we are pleased to have found someone that shares his commitment to the young people of our school.”
McCarty announced Monday he was stepping down after an impressive four-year run in the position. BA had a record-setting 2017-18 campaign, winning five state championships, having several coaches earn region Coach of the Year honors, and numerous postseason player accolades. All of that after the school won the South Carolina Independent School Association’s prestigious President’s Cup Award – the highest distinction for a private-school athletic program in the state – for the first time in 2016-17.
“With the athletic program on such solid ground, now seems to be the ideal time for me and the program to make a transition,” McCarty said. “After several months of contemplation, I informed Head of School Dan Durbin of my decision to step down as athletic director.”
McCarty oversaw tremendous progress during his tenure as AD, expanding the athletics program to include varsity boys and girls cross country, archery, and volleyball teams, and completing renovations of the press box, the soccer and football playing field, and the baseball and softball field and practice field. The school currently is undergoing a $2 million renovation project that will include major upgrades to the gymnasium.
BA also made several key coaching hires under McCarty’s watch, adding former Beaufort High School coaches Lillian Aldred (girls basketball), Nathan Livesay (boys basketball), and Mark Clifford (football), among others.
While McCarty is unsure what his next step will be – perhaps a return to the real estate career he left behind when he became a full-time AD – he plans to stay on to aid with the transition and to remain involved on a part-time or volunteer basis.
“Being AD at Beaufort Academy has been an incredible experience, and this is simply the next step in my journey,” McCarty said. “I will be forever grateful for the opportunity I was given at BA. I could not be prouder of our tremendous coaches, staff, and all that our talented student-athletes have accomplished on and off the field.”
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