STARKVILLE, Miss. – UC Davis head coach Kathy DeYoung, along with Aggie assistants Mieko Nagata, Jamie Wallin and Michelle West have been named the 2003 Speedline/NFCA Division II Coaching Staff of the Year.

DeYoung and her staff guided UC Davis to a 53-15 record. The Aggies defeated Georgia College and State University 7-0 to become the second ever team to go undefeated in the national tournament. It was UC Davis’ first-ever Division II softball championship.

The Aggie staff was also selected by its peers as the Speedline/NFCA West Region Coaching Staff of the Year. UC Davis claimed regional honors in 1996 and 1997.

DeYoung and her staff will be recognized as the 2003 Speedline/NFCA Division II Coaching Staff of the Year at the NFCA National Convention in Montgomery, Texas, this December.

Other Speedline top regional staffs, as selected by their coaching peers, are:

South Central Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Donna Fields 
Assistant Coach: Jessica Peoples

In her sixth season as head coach of the Rattlers, Fields returned St. Mary's to the NCAA national tournament. St. Mary’s fell short of defending its national title, falling to eventual champion UC Davis in the semifinals. St. Mary’s finished the season 50-12 and won the Heartland Conference for the second consecutive season.

North Central Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Darren Mueller 
Assistant Coach: Jamie Trachsel

In his first season as NDSU’s full-time head coach, Mueller returned the Bison to excellence, finishing in a third place tie at the national tournament. NDSU went 43-11 on the season, winning the North Central Conference regular season crown.

Mid-Atlantic Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Bob Brookens 
Assistant Coaches: Randy Hood, Ben DeShong

Guiding the Raiders to their first conference title in history, Brookens led Shippensburg to the national tournament. The Raiders finished 37-14, and Brookens was named the PSAC Eastern Division Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season.

South Atlantic Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Windy Thees 
Assistant Coach: Kelly Zeilstra

Prior to Thees’ arrival in 2000, GC&SU had never had a winning season. In 2003, the Bobcats lost the national championship game to UC Davis. GC&SU went 43-9 in 2003, finishing second in the rugged Peach Belt Conference and winning the South Atlantic regional on North Florida’s home field.

South Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Tami Cyr 
Assistant Coaches: Cindie Corey, Destini Robinson 

In her 12th season as head coach at West Florida, Cyr returned to the national tournament by winning the South regional at top-ranked Barry. The Argonauts claimed their fifth Gulf South Conference title in the last nine years. UWF finished 2003 with a 50-12 mark, including win streaks of 11 and 19 along the way. 

Northeast Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Ken King 
Assistant Coach: Ed Mahar 

In his sixth season as the Dolphins’ head coach, Ken King took LeMoyne to its second ever trip to the national championships. LeMoyne dominated the Northeast region, finishing 45-10 overall and 25-3 in the Northeast 10 Conference.  

Great Lakes Region Coaching Staff of the Year

Head Coach: Gary Bryce 
Assistant Coaches: Pat Kent, Jack McDaniel

Head coach Gary Bryce led the Warriors back to the national tournament for the 11th time in 2003, winning the Great Lakes Regional while only scoring four runs. Bryce won his 700th game along the way, and WSU appeared in the national poll for the 18th time in his 22 seasons. It was also the 18th time under Bryce that Wayne State finished first or second in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

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