McFarland hires new assistant coach

Third-year Northern Illinois University baseball coach Spanky McFarland has certain requirements when hiring an assistant: he needs a solid background in the game, he must have the ability to recruit, and he has to have an unusual last name.

Well, the last of these qualities may not necessarily be a requirement, but in many respects, Mark Quimuyou (ka-MOY-a) fits the bill.

The newest Huskie staff member replaces Pete Tsotsos who left NIU in June to join a family business.

Having spent over two years as an assistant at Kennesaw State College, Quimuyog’s responsibilities at Northern Illinois include working with the pitching staff and coordinating recruiting. The hiring is subject to formal approval by the school’s Board of Regents.

Quimuyog boasts almost 10 years of collegiate baseball experience between playing and coaching.

Among the most notable years was 1989 when as a student assistant coach at the University of South Florida he was part of a 45-18 campaign. The Bulls not only earned an invitation to the NCAA Tournament, but they also received a first-ever No. 1 national ranking during the year.

In his tenure at Kennesaw State, the 27-year-old helped Steve Givens and current Fighting Owl coach Mike Sansing direct KSC to a 108-60-1 won-loss ledger. Included in that total were a pair of NAIA District 25 playoff appearances, that resulted in fourth-place finishes in 1991 and 1992. Kennesaw State finished 14th in the final 1993 NAIA rankings with a 3.23 team earned run average.

“Mark gives us an excellent recruiter who also has done an outstanding job in pitching,” McFarland said. “The biggest thing he gives us is energy and optimism. We have a nice young pitching staff and he can push this group to a higher level.”

Outside of the collegiate world, Quimuyog led the Lake Worth Pony League All-Star squad to a second-place finish in the World Series (1987). His group earned the district, state, regional and zone championship trophies. In addition, he was a pitching coach in the Great Lakes Summer League in Lima, OH.

“Spanky is a quality guy and a class act, and he takes pride in what he does. That is why I wanted to work with him,” Quimuyog stated. “I saw the guys play a little bit this spring and they’re well coached. This is a classy organization. The players just need some tradition in winning to gain confidence.”

After garnering all-area status in both baseball and football at John I. Leonard High School in Lake Worth, Fl, Quimuyog went on to play at Palm Beach Community College in West Palm Beach, Fl. In two seasons at PBCC, Quimuyog helped the Panthers post a 90-30 record.