People ask me all the time, why did you start Koa? What idea inspired you to start Koa? The answer is: a little bit of pain is why I founded Koa. I feel like “a little bit of pain” is why most businesses come about.
My pain was two summer seasons of competitive travel baseball when I was 17 and 18 years old and playing for the Columbia Reds at Atholton HS in Howard County. What felt like every day of 2000 and 2001, a high school teammate (Nate) and I trekked (pre ICC of course) up the back roads to avoid the beltway in the summer heat. Our trip was usually around 115 minutes there with a smooth 40 minutes for the ride home.
I knew the driving was worth it to be a contributing member of a talented team with top of the line coaching staff. One of my former Columbia Reds teammates is still in the major leagues (Justin Maxwell), roughly 1/2 the team earned baseball scholarships and nearly every player went on to have some type of college playing career.
After my playing career ended in the spring of 2005, a number of parents in the Bethesda community approached me about getting into coaching. At first I was reluctant, but then I remembered the pain from those hot, long 3 pm summer drives with Nate, and decided to pursue coaching. I thought why can’t Bethesda have a team just like the Columbia Reds, and why don’t I do something about it.
Koa has iterated many times over since the initial dream of putting together one, high level 18U AAU Baseball team, though the concept remains the same. Have great coaching and teammates within our county. My long drives to Atholton HS which began 14 summers ago are why we have Koa today.