STARKVILLE, Miss. – The National Fastpitch Coaches Association announced the three winners of the 2012 NJCAA Division I Regional Coaching Staff of the Year award on Friday.
The top three seeds from this year’s national championship were all named as regional winners. National champion Chattanooga State took home honors in the south, while national runner-up Salt Lake was the winner in the west. Blinn was the final of the three honorees, taking home the award in the midwest region. All three teams are now eligible to be named as the 2012 NFCA NJCAA Division I National Coaching Staff of the Year, which will be announced on June 14.
Chattanooga, led by head coach Beth Keylon-Randolph and assistants Jamie Qualls and Steve Jaecks, spent the majority of the season at the top of the NJCAA Division I poll and captured the Region 7 championship. The Tigers (62-4) suffered a slight hiccup in the latter rounds of the national tournament, but battled back and won three games on the final day to capture the first national championship for any Chattanooga State program.
Head coach Mary Kay Amicone and assistants Kate Nygaard and Cyndee Bennett led Salt Lake to the Region 18 championship and an overall record of 59-9. The Bruins battled all the way to the national championship game this season, but fell to eventual national champion Chattanooga to finish as runners-up.
Blinn finished their 2012 campaign with a record of 51-10 and won its fourth consecutive Region 14 title. The Buccaneers, who were piloted by head coach Rick Church and assistants Jami Ingram and Haley Long, turned in a very strong showing at the national tournament, finishing fifth out of 16 teams.