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Ricci Woodard

STAFF REPORT

Texas State softball coach Ricci Woodard was selected as the all-time most victorious softball coach in Southland Conference history last week as the league commemorated its 50th anniversary.

Woodard is the Southland’s all-time most winning coach in league play with a 249-75-1 (.769) record from 2001-12. Her overall career mark during that time included 440 wins while she led Texas State to six regular-season Southland titles and four tournament crowns. Her teams advanced to five NCAA regionals and she coached 59 All-Southland players, six league hitters of the year, eight pitchers of the year and 27 All-Southland academic choices.

In addition to the honor for Woodard, nine Texas State players were named to the Southland Conference all-time softball roster. Those players were McKenzie Baack, Ragan Blake, Jessica Chase, Haley Gaddis, Chandler Hall, Nicole Neuerburg, Alex Newton, Katie Ann Trahan and Kristen Zaleski.

During those 12 years in the Southland, the league awarded a total of 36 awards for player, pitcher and hitter of the year, and these players accounted for 17 of them, almost half.

The list includes five Bobcats who were named Southland Player of the Year six times from 2001-12 — Zaleski (2003 and 2004) Trahan (2006) Blake (2008), Newton (2009) and Hall (2012). During those same seasons, the league’s Pitcher of the Year went to Chase (2001), Neuerburg (2002), Trahan (2006), Blake (2007 and 2008), Hall (2009, 2010 and 2012). The Texas State players named the Southland’s Hitter of the Year included Zaleski (2003 and 2004) and Baack (2008).

The Southland developed a metric that measured real-time honors throughout the league’s softball history that dates back to 1983. A premium was placed on first-team all-conference selections, individual honors, season and career statistics, and postseason success. In addition to the four-time all-conference choices, the all-time team also includes 11 student-athletes that were named to the all-conference first team on three occasions, and 45 student-athletes that were two-time all-Southland picks.

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