Charlie Owens: Pace Academy

Charlie Owens

Charlie Owens turned Pace Academy’s baseball program into a powerhouse during his tenure and was inducted into the Georgia Dugout Club Hall of Fame.

Owens retired after the 2011 season with career coaching record of 513-442. He coached at Pace for 42 seasons, starting his career straight out of college in 1968 after a record-setting career as a pitcher at Oglethorpe University.

The legendary coach guided Pace to three consecutive Class A state championships from 1993 to 1995. The Knights won 50 straight postseason games during the championship span.

"Early in my career, there was no one I wanted to beat more [than Owens’ Pace teams],” former Greater Atlanta Christian coach Cliff Shelton told the Buckhead Patch newspaper. “It was intimidating to watch them take infield before the game. They always looked so sharp, so well-coached."

Owens sent hundreds of players to college and several were drafted, including Major Leaguer Michael Barrett who starred on all three state championship teams.

He also coached pitchers Ben Fowler and Jase Wrigley. Fowler signed with the Atlanta Braves out of high school, while Wrigley went on to star at Georgia Tech.

“I had a lot of good ball players,” Owens said. “It’s wasn’t all me. I certainly had a lot of talent.”

Owens grew up in Atlanta and played football and baseball at Sylvan Hills where he was captain on both teams.

Pace Academy’s baseball field is named “Charlie Owens Field.”

“He's a person I have the utmost respect for,” former Pace Academy athletic director Kris Palmerton told the Buckhead Patch newspaper. “He's truly an icon and a class act. We'll remember him with great nostalgia for many years. Good seasons and bad seasons, Charlie has always remained a constant here at Pace Academy."

Some information in this article was used from Buckhead Patch newspaper.