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NFCA Names Speedline NAIA National Coaching Staff of the Year

Simon Fraser University head coach Mike Renney and his assistant coaches, Stan Brook and Tanya Karlsen, have been named the 1999 Speedline/NFCA National NAIA Coaching Staff of the Year.

Renney, Brook and Karlsen guided SFU to a 40-7 record and the 1999 NAIA championship after posting a runnerup finish at the NAIA nationals the preivous season. Renney is also a member of the Canadian National Team staff and helped Canada to a fifth-place finish in the 1998 Women's World Championships, earning a spot in the 2000 Olympic games. In five years with Team Canada, Renney has coached at the 1994 World Championships, the 1995 Pan American Games and the 1996 Olympics.

Renney, Brook and Karlsen were selected by their peers as the Speedline/NFCA NAIA West Region Coaching Staff of the Year and were then placed on the national coaching staff of the year ballot. They will be recognized as the 1999 Speedline/NFCA NAIA National Coaching Staff of the Year at the NFCA National Convention at St. Petersburg, Fla., in December.

Other Speedline top regional coaching staffs, as selected by their coaching peers, are: East Region : Nova Southeastern University (FL) - Robyn Handler, head coach; Miguel Nunez and Heidi Wickham, assistants . Nova Southeastern posted a final record of 53-7 and was tied for ninth in the final regular season NAIA Top 25. NSU finished the season ranked second in the NAIA in team earned run average (0.93), third in fielding percentage (.966) and ninth in batting average (.330). Pitcher Shannon Sawyer led the NAIA in ERA (0.34, 9-0) while pitcher Cameron Morgan led the nation in won-lost percentage (21-2, .913) and was tied for eighth in ERA.

Great Lakes Region: Olivet Nazarene University (IL) - Ritchie Richardson, head coach; Heather Salter, assistant. Olivet Nazarene was 50-18 overall, 2-2 at NAIA Nationals, and was ranked seventh in the final NAIA poll. Shortstop Anna Babinski ranked fourth in the NAIA In runs scored (70) and pitcher Corrie Allen was second in the NAIA in ERA (0.68) while going 30-8. Olivet Nazarene ranked tenth in the NAIA in team ERA (1.39), tied for 17th in batting average (.316) and tied for 18th in fielding percentage (.945).

Midwest Region: McKendree College (IL) - Evelyn Bean, head coach. McKendree (38-25) wasn't ranked in the final NAIA Regular Season Top 25, and was the No. 4 seed in the Midwest Regional. But the Bearcats , after an early fall into the loser's bracket, came back to win five in a row to take the regional title. McKendree proved it was no fluke at nationals, where the Bearcats won three of their first four games before being eliminated.

Southwest Region: Houston Baptist University (TX) - Mary-Ellen Hall, head coach; Roger Willhite, assistant. Houston Baptist (39-15) was ranked 13th in the final NAIA regular season poll, but lost two of three in the tough Southwest Region Tournament and did not qualify for NAIA Nationals. HBU's Kathy Spies ranked second in the NAIA in home runs (13) and fifth in runs batted in (55).