FSU names Eva Patterson-Heath its 12th Head Women's Basketball Coach
July 8, 2009
Fayetteville, NC - In a press conference held in Capel Arena, Fayetteville State University introduced Mrs. Eva Patterson-Heath as its 12th Head Women's Basketball Coach. Women's Basketball officially began at Fayetteville State in 1940. Since its inception, the Lady Broncos have won two CIAA Championships (1979 & 2001) and have six NCAA postseason appearances.
Coach Eva Patterson-Heath previously served as the Head Girl's Basketball Coach at Red Springs High School in Red Springs, NC for the past 13 years. Under her leadership, the Lady Devils had a 503-128 record. This outstanding record led her teams to 17 conference titles, 11 conference tournament championships, and 23 state playoff appearances with two State Championship appearances.
Coach Heath's coaching ability allowed her to develop 21 collegiate student-athletes, seven North Carolina East-West All Star players, three Robeson County Players of the Year, and one Cape Fear Region Player of the Year. Flourishing at Red Springs High School, Coach Heath has brought home several awards. In 2009, she was inducted into the Robeson County's Inaugural Sports Hall of Fame and in 2006, she was chosen as the North Carolina High School Athletics Association Female Coach of the Year.
Though a successful basketball coach, she has achieved success in other venues as well. In 1992, she organized the Inaugural Lady Devils Holiday Invitational Tournament which led to the establishment of the Robeson County Girls Christmas Classic, which has become a major tournament for the area. Basketball was not the only sport on which Coach Heath was able to leave an everlasting mark. In 1994, she established the boys and girls cross country teams and in 2004 co-founded the Robeson County Cross-Country Championships. Subsequently, she led her teams to ten conference championships. Though active in sports, she has an intense passion for education and community service.
Eva Patterson-Heath has served on the Board of Directors for Communities in schools, as well as a volunteer coach for Robeson County Special Olympics. In 2005, she received the Lumberton Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Award for Community Service. She was a two-time Red Springs High School Teacher of the Year, and in 1999 she was awarded the Educator the Year Award by the Robeson County Black Caucus.
Coach Heath's career began as an activities coordinator in 1977 with the Robeson County Parks and Recreation Department; she later became an athletic director, which led her into her coaching careers in basketball as well cross country and track. She began her path into education at North Carolina A&T State University where she received her Bachelor's of Science in History with a concentration in Education. She later received her certification from Fayetteville State University in Special Education and her Master of Arts Degree in Education from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
Coach Heath stated that, "A reciprocal expectation of absolutely nothing less than the best is what drives the competitive commitment to student excellence in my career." With her skills and love for the game, her leadership will be an excellent addition to our athletic department and the Bronco family.