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Tufts University Receives NFCA Division III National Coaching Staff of the Year Accolades
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Head coach Cheryl Milligan and assistants Marissa Myers and Jodie Moreau of the NCAA Division III national champion Tufts University softball squad have been selected as the National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III National Coaching Staff of the Year, the Association announced on Monday.
The Jumbos picked up their program’s first national title, sweeping through the Babson Park Regional and NCAA Tournament to cap off a 46-3 season. Tufts finished the season ranked No. 1 in the NFCA Top 25 poll. On the way to the national crown, Tufts knocked off Cortland State in back-to-back games (6-0, 6-5), Montclair State, 3-1 (9 inn.), and Texas-Tyler (6-0) all during the Division III World Series.
Milligan just completed her ninth season at the helm of the Jumbos softball program. A 1995 graduate of Tufts, she has guided the Jumbos to four NESCAC titles and three NCAA tournament berths. Her teams have a combined record of 267-101 for a winning percentage of .725. Until this campaign, Tufts best season came in 2009 as the Jumbos went 44-3 and finished fourth in the nation at the NCAA Championship in Montclair, N.J.
For their work this season, Milligan, Myers and Moreau also earned the NFCA New England Region Coaching Staff of the Year award.
Other regional winners this season were:
The Central Region was represented by Anderson University, led by head coach Tony Holloway and Assistants Justin Bates and Mike Lee, which won its third consecutive Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament championship. Anderson finished the season 31-17 and upset higher ranked Trine twice in NCAA regional play to reach the Division III championship tournament. Anderson finished the season ranked No. 13 in the NFCA Top 25 poll.
Montclair State University earned Regional CSOY honors for the East Region after turning in a 46-5 record en route to finishing fifth at the NCAA championship tournament. Led by head coach Anita Kubicka and assistants Ryan Doty, Rich Vaccaro and Chris Foye, Montclair State was ranked No. 1 in the nation for a majority of the 2013 season and was named NJAC Tournament Champions. Montclair State finished the season ranked No. 4 in the NFCA Top 25 poll.
Head coach Mike Reed and assistants Whitney Wyly, Megan Dobrinski, Christy Gipson and Coby Gipson led University of Texas, Tyler to the West Region CSOY honors after turning in a 47-6 season. The Patriots made their third consecutive NCAA championship appearance, finishing fourth in the tournament. UT Tyler was voted in at No. 3 in the NFCA Top 25 poll to end the season.
After a 35-17 season that saw SUNY Cortland make it all the way to the national championship game in the Division III tournament, head coach Julie Lenhart and assistants Abby Martin, Larry Miller, Annemarie Pagano and Stephanie Hartquist were named the Northeast Region CSOY. Cortland was the national runner-up and swept the SUNYAC tournament to cap off a 10-game winning streak heading into NCAA regional play. Cortland finished the 2013 season ranked No. 5 in the NFCA Top 25 poll.
Salisbury University and head coach Margie Knight, along with her assistants - Tom Stitcher, Terri Sharpless, Jess Stoltz, John Krahling, Nicole McClaskey – earned Atlantic Regional CSOY honors. The Sea Gulls turned in a 42-4 record this season and swept the CAC Tournament and NCAA Salem Regional to make the team’s seventh NCAA Division III championship tournament in school history. Salisbury fell in the semifinals of the tournament but finished the 2013 season ranked No. 2 in the final NFCA Top 25 poll.
Head coach Renae Hartl and assistants Tracy Hjelle, Teri Olson, Erika Randall of Luther College were named Midwest Region CSOY. Luther College turned in a 33-11 record this season and made their fourth consecutive appearance in the NCAA championship tournament. Luther swept through the UW Whitewater Regional and defeated Anderson University in tournament play. Luther College finished the 2013 season ranked No. 6 in the NFCA Top 25 poll.
Carthage College earned Great Lakes Region CSOY honors after a 33-12 season. Led by Amy Gillmore (head coach) and Dave Rivera (assistant), Carthage College earned a spot in the Great Lakes Regional for the second season in a row and defeated Finlandia, Illinois Wesleyan and Wisconsin Eau Claire before falling to North Central College in the semifinals. Carthage finished the 2013 season ranked No. 23 in the NFCA Top 25 poll.