Category Archives: Top 25

7-25-2017 Minnesota Hires Trachsel

Gophers hire Jamie Trachsel to coach softball, replacing Stanford-bound Jessica Allister

Duluth native and former St. Cloud State standout coached Iowa State to strong season.


Jamie Trachsel, former Iowa State softball coach, has been hired by the Gophers. (Iowa State University photo)

Trachsel comes to Minnesota from Iowa State, where she led the Cyclones for one season following six as co-head coach at North Dakota State. Jessica Allister, who coached the Gophers to its most successful season in program history this past school year, announced earlier this month she was accepting the Stanford job.

Trachsel’s hiring will be official after a standard university background check is completed, the school announced Monday in its news release.

“Jamie is one of the country’s premier young softball coaches and we’re excited to bring her to Minnesota to lead our program and build on the success we’ve had in recent years,” athletic director Mark Coyle said in the statement. “Jamie’s leadership has consistently produced winning results. That track record, paired with her Midwestern roots and proven ability to develop the skills of her student-athletes throughout their collegiate careers, makes her the perfect fit for the Gophers.”

Trachsel was a multisport athlete at Duluth Central — the U’s release said she earned 17 varsity letters in high school, in four different sports — and played softball at St. Cloud State, earning all-region and all-academic honors.

Trachsel guided the Cyclones to a fifth-place finish in the Big 12 last season, one of their best finishes in years. NDSU had a 221-109 record, won its conference regular-season and tournament championship five times each and advanced to NCAA Regional play five times in the six years Trachsel was co-head coach.

“I could not be more humbled and honored to lead the Gophers softball program, and I want to thank Mark Coyle and search committee for this tremendous opportunity,” Trachsel said. “While the decision to leave Iowa State was challenging, the opportunity that lies ahead at Minnesota to continue building a national powerhouse while returning to my home state is one that I could not pass up. The foundation that is in place is truly remarkable, and I look forward to meeting the team and helping these young women thrive as student-athletes. As a native of this great state, I have always admired how the University of Minnesota offers an athletic and academic experience that is second-to-none in the nation, and I am eager to work with our team and the University community to begin the next chapter of Gopher softball.”

7-18-2017 Barnhill Wins ESPY Award

MORE: Florida ace Kelly Barnhill wins 2017 ESPY

Florida’s Barnhill wins ESPY

Florida pitcher Kelly Barnhill won the 2017 ESPY for Best Female Collegiate Athlete during an awards celebration in Los Angeles.

Brad McClenny/Staff Photographer/file

Published: Thursday, July 13, 2017 at 7:08 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, July 13, 2017 at 7:08 a.m.

LOS ANGELES – Florida sophomore Kelly Barnhill added another postseason award late Wednesday as she took home the 2017 ESPY for Best Female Collegiate Athlete during an awards celebration at the Microsoft Theater.

The Marietta, Ga., native became the first player in UF program history to receive an ESPY award.

Also on the ballot for the award was Stanford’s Inky Ajanaku (volleyball), West Virginia’s Kadeisha Buchanan (soccer), Washington’s Kelsey Plum (basketball) and Maryland’s Zoe Stukenberg (lacrosse).

This past season Barnhill helped lead the Gators back to the Women’s College World Series with national leading marks in earned run average (0.51) and strikeouts per seven innings (13.0).

Those two staggering statistics also went down as the best in a single season by a Florida pitcher but she also set records in lowest opponent batting average (.121), most combined shutouts (10), most strikeouts looking (100) and lowest stolen base percentage (.333).

The 25th annual show honoring the past year’s top athletes and sports moments is a production by ESPN.

Barnhill’s Season Awards

2017 ESPY – Best Female Collegiate Athlete

2017 Honda Sports Award

2017 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year

2017 espnW Player of the Year

2017 CoSIDA Academic All-American

NFCA All-American First Team

SEC Pitcher of the Year

All-SEC First Team

SEC Pitcher of the Week – 5x (2/20, 4/11, 4/18, 4/25, 5/2)

USA Softball Co-Player of the Week – (4/18)

Louisville Slugger/NFCA Pitcher of the Week – (4/18)

ESPNW Player of the Week – (4/18)

7-18-2017 Stanford Hires Jessica Allister

College softball: Stanford hires alumna Jessica Allister as new head coach

Stanford Athletics
Last Updated – Jul 18, 2017 16:41 EDT
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STANFORD, Calif. – Jessica Allister has been named the head coach of Stanford softball, as announced Tuesday by director of athletics Bernard Muir.

Allister, the fourth head coach in program history, joins the Cardinal after leading Minnesota the past seven seasons. She led the Gophers to unprecedented heights in 2017, registering a program-best 56-5 record and earning the first No. 1 national ranking in the USA Today/NFCA Coaches poll in program history. She has accumulated a 290-107 (.730) overall record during her career.

“I am thrilled to welcome Jessica back to Stanford to lead the program she helped build,” said Muir. “She was an elite competitor during her time on The Farm and has continued to excel in her coaching career. Jessica has established herself as an excellent coach and I believe she will push our student-athletes to be their best on the field, in the classroom and in the community.”


It will be familiar territory for Allister who returns to Stanford where she was a second-team All-American as a catcher in 2004 and helped lead the Cardinal to Women’s College World Series appearances in 2001 and 2004. She graduated in 2004 with a degree in economics.

“Stanford is home,” said Allister. “Stanford has always been home. I had an amazing experience as an athlete and have always been a proud member of the Stanford community. To be able to come back and lead my alma mater is a dream come true.”

7-6-2017 Waldrop Joins Duke Staff

Waldrop Joins Duke Softball Staff


July 6, 2017


DURHAM, N.C. – Duke head softball coach Marissa Young announced on Thursday the addition of former collegiate National Player of the Year Lacey Waldrop to the Blue Devil coaching staff.  Waldrop will serve as an assistant coach with primary responsibilities including pitching staff and player development.

“We are excited to add Lacey Waldrop to our coaching staff,” said Young.  “I have always respected Lacey as a bright young lady who is humble and no stranger to hard work. I love she is such a fierce competitor who really understands how to connect with student-athletes and elevate their mentality to take their games to the next level. Lacey has had the opportunity to learn from two of the top programs in the country, has an understanding of what it takes to consistently win in both the ACC and NCAA Tournament and is eager to help build a championship culture here at Duke.  She will play an integral role with our pitching staff and in preparing our offense for upcoming opponents.”

Waldrop joins the Duke program following one season at the University of Oklahoma, where she served as a graduate student manager as the Sooners went 61-9, captured the Big 12 regular season and tournament titles and defeated top-seeded Florida in the best-of-three NCAA championship series to win their second consecutive national crown

6-28-2017 OU Coaches Hailed as Nation’s Best

OU Softball Coaches Heralded as National Staff of the Year


NORMAN – Winners of back-to-back national championships, the Oklahoma softball coaches have repeated as the NFCA Division I National Coaching Staff of the Year, the National Fastpitch Association announced Wednesday.

Head coach Patty Gasso, associate head coach Melyssa Lombardi, assistant coach J.T. Gasso and volunteer assistant coach Andrea Gasso took home the honor for the second straight year after guiding the Sooners to a 61-9 record and the fourth national championship in program history.

Gasso’s staff, which included Lombardi, was also tabbed the nation’s best in 2000 and 2013 after the Sooners won their first two national titles. OU has been recognized as the Division I Central Region Coaching Staff of the Year for each of the last six seasons.

After losing their opening game of the Regionals, tenth-seeded OU rattled off four straight elimination-game wins before sweeping No. 7 Auburn in the Super Regionals. Oklahoma then took down No. 15 Baylor, No. 6 Washington and No. 3 Oregon.

Game one of the WCWS Championship Series against top-seeded Florida was an instant classic as the Sooners prevailed 7-5 in 17 innings, the longest game in Finals history (since 2005). Twice Oklahoma had Florida down to its final out, but the Gators rallied in the bottom of the seventh and bottom of the 12th to prolong the game. In the top of the 17th, Shay Knighten hit a three-run homer to put the Sooners up for good.

Oklahoma then swept the WCWS Championship Series with a 5-4 win in game two. Knighten was again the hero as she hit a bases-loaded double, turning a 3-2 deficit in the second inning into a 5-3 lead.

Coming off a national title in 2016, the Sooners started the season ranked No. 1 in the NFCA preseason poll for the first time in program history. However, the team would slip as low as No. 13 as late as Week 7. OU was 23-7 on March 18, but rebounded to win 38 of its last 40 contests en route to the national title and a unanimous No. 1 ranking in the final polls.

For the fifth time in the last six seasons Oklahoma had at least three All-Americans with Knighten, Caleigh Clifton and Paige Parker on the second team. OU also had seven All-Region honorees for the fourth straight season and tied a school record with five first-teamers.

Winners of the Big 12 for the sixth straight year, Oklahoma swept nearly every major conference award, including Player of the Year (Knighten), Pitcher of the Year (Parker), Freshman of the Year (Nicole Mendes) and Coach of the Year (Gasso). The Sooners put four players on the All-Big 12 First Team, four on the All-Big 12 Second Team and two on the All-Big 12 Freshman Team.

The team ranked second in the country in winning percentage (.871), sixth in fielding percentage (.977), ninth in runs per game (6.26) and 10th in team earned run average (1.55).

Paige Lowary led the nation in saves with 11, a total higher than any Sooners team in program history. Knighten, meanwhile, was seventh in the country with 70 RBI, while Clifton was ninth in hit by pitch per game (0.37).

A 2012 NFCA Hall of Fame inductee, Gasso just completed her 23rd season at the helm of the OU program. She owns a career collegiate coaching record of 1307-381-3 (.774) with an overall mark of 11146-322-2 (.780) at the University of Oklahoma. She ranks sixth among active coaches (min. 5 years) and eighth all-time (min. 10 years) in winning percentage, while her win total is 14th all-time and ninth among active coaches.

Gasso has won more Big 12 games (307-85) than any coach in the league’s history. Oklahoma has claimed 10 Big 12 regular season and five championship titles under her direction, including the 2017 crown after a 17-1 mark in league play tied for the program’s best conference record.

– OU –