Bama Softball Coaches Staff of the Year

Softball Staff Named NFCA South Region Coaching Staff of the Year


By Adam Bagni

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The University of Alabama softball coaching staff was named the National Fastpitch Coaches Association South Region Coaching Staff of the Year.

Head coach Patrick Murphy, along with assistant coaches Alyson Habetz and Vann Stuedeman led the Crimson Tide to a 58-8 record and a Southeastern Conference Western Division title. Alabama also captured NCAA Regional and Super Regional titles to advance to the programs fifth Women’s College World Series.

The Crimson Tide made their deepest run into the Women’s College World Series, advancing to the semifinals with wins over two-time defending national champion Arizona and Louisiana-Lafayette.

Alabama had five players chosen to the Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-South Region team with four players garnering All-America honors. The Tide led the nation with three first-team Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-America selections (Kelley Montalvo, Charlotte Morgan and Brittany Rogers).

Murphy, who completed his 10th season at the helm of the Alabama program in 2008, is the architect of the Crimson Tide’s potent offense. UA ranked in the top five nationally in five offensive categories, including scoring (2nd), stolen bases (2nd), slugging percentage (3rd), doubles (5th) and batting average (5th). His consistent leadership and ability to recruit and develop talented players has turned the UA program into one of the best in the nation.

Habetz, the Tide’s associate head coach, has been on the Alabama staff since Murphy took over prior to the 1999 season. She has assisted in the development of Alabama’s explosive offense while tutoring the Tide outfielders and evaluating recruits.

Stuedeman joined the Tide staff for the 2001 season and has consistently developed the UA pitching staff into one of the best and most versatile in the country. Her 2008 staff featured freshman Kelsi Dunne, who earned All-America honors while setting the freshman school record for wins (26-6). Her No. 2 hurler, Morgan, posted a 17-2 record with a team-best 1.27 ERA while Chrissy Owens finished 10th nationally with five saves.

It is the fourth time Murphy’s staff has been named the NFCA South Region Coaching Staff of the Year. The 2000 staff was the first to be selected and the current staff was also honored in 2003 and 2006.

Courtesy: Alabama Media Relations