XENIA — On Friday, December 9 before the home game versus Piqua, Xenia Community Schools will dedicate the Xenia High School gymnasium in honor of long-time coach, Phil Anderson.
“The proud tradition and history of our Athletics program at Xenia High School owe much to the legacy left by Coach Phil Anderson,” said Dr. Gabriel Lofton, Superintendent. “I am pleased by the Board’s decision to rename our Xenia High School gym facilities in honor of an individual who made such a significant impact on both our Athletics program and thousands of individual students over the years.”
The dedication will take place in a brief ceremony prior to the varsity match that is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m., where the gym will be officially renamed as the Phil Anderson Gymnasium. His family will be on site for the dedication, including Elaine, his wife, and Kent Anderson, his son who is also a coach and teacher at Xenia High School.
“My dad had the ability to get the very most from his students and his athletes, helping them believe they could accomplish anything — and they often did,” said Kent Anderson. “Seeing him recognized in such a permanent way is truly meaningful for our family, and we are humbled by the honor.”
A Xenia High School graduate from the Class of 1955, Coach Anderson earned numerous accolades and awards over the course of his storied career, coaching more than 1,400 games at the junior high and high school levels. During his 37 years of coaching Basketball and Baseball for Xenia, he racked up the best winning record of any coach in Xenia basketball history, with 245 varsity wins. Anderson coached 11 championship teams in the Western Ohio League (WOL), winning district titles in 1978 and 1993. He was awarded the league or district Coach of the Year award 13 times, was named the Ohio Coach of the Year in Division I Basketball in 1992, and was inducted into the Miami Valley Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 1992. In 2002, he was inducted into the XCS Foundation Hall of Honor.
For those wishing to attend the ceremony, regular admission will apply to the varsity game. However, any former Xenia students who played for Coach Anderson from 1976 – 1994 are invited to attend, and will be admitted to the game for free.
The resolution to dedicate the XHS gymnasium in honor of Coach Anderson was passed unanimously at the September 12 regular meeting of the Board of Education.