The Prince William Cannons yesterday named 25-year-old Ken Shepard the team's general manager.

He previously held the same post for the Geneva Cubs of the New York-Penn A League. Named Cubs' general manager in 1987, he was the youngest to hold the post in all of baseball at the time.

Shepard had a quirky claim to fame while with Geneva. After the Cubs lost six straight games midway through the '88 season, he vowed to sleep in the press box until the team won -- he emerged 12 games later.

A graduate of St. Thomas University (formerly Biscayne College) in Miami, he was vice president-general manager of West Palm Beach (senior league) last season.

"I welcome the opportunities and challenges of leading the Cannons," Shepard said. "This team is like a diamond in the rough. It's my job to polish it and put it on display."

Cannons President Mark Tracz said Jeffrey Mercer, whom Shepard is replacing, left to work in the department of player development for the New York Yankees, Prince William's parent club. Cannons assistant general manager Lisa Senker also left to work there. George Brezinski, director of baseball operations for Class AA Midland (Tex.), replaces her.