Lubbock, Texas - Head Softball Coach Shanon Hays has hired former Arkansas assistant coach Aly Sartini and two-time national champion short stop Kristie Fox (Arizona, 2006 and 2007) to help him guide the softball program at Texas Tech. Additionally, former Lubbock Christian national champion and stellar student, Lisa Stratton, will become the program's director of operations.
Sartini spent the past five seasons with Arkansas, helping the Razorbacks to consecutive NCAA postseason berths over the past two seasons representing one of the nation's toughest softball leagues, the Southeastern Conference. At Arkansas she worked with pitchers, hitters, the infield, directed camps, and handled the business functions of the team. Impressively in 2009, 20 members of the Arkansas softball team earned academic honors, including three who were perfect in the classroom, under Sartini's guidance as academic coordinator for the squad.
An assistant coach for three years at Birmingham-Southern College prior to that, Sartini is no stranger to helping to build programs. A member of the inaugural Razorbacks squad in 1999, she played three infield positions and was available to pitch at a moment's notice, helping to lead the team to three SEC tournaments and an NCAA Regional berth. The Galt, Calif. native will direct pitching, coordinate recruiting efforts, work with slappers, and will serve as the academic and travel coordinator for the Red Raiders.
Fox, who was a first-round selection of the Chicago Bandits (National Professional Fastpitch League) in 2007 and who still plays professionally during the summer, was a standout member of the Wildcats' team for four years. An NFCA All American in her senior season, she set the record for most hits at the Women's College World Series in 2007 with 11 en route to helping Arizona earn its eighth national title. She is currently slugging .393 with the league-leading Bandits (16-4 on the season) and has committed only one error in all 20 games playing infield. At Tech, she will work with hitters and the defense and will assist with recruiting efforts.
She spent the past season working at Murray State as an assistant coach recruiting for the program as it enters its first season of DI competition in softball. Prior to that, she was an undergraduate assistant at Arizona while earning her degree in psychology. Originally from San Diego, Calif., she is a former member of the USA Elite Team and earned a gold medal in the College World Games in Taiwan with team USA in 2006.
Stratton was a standout outfielder for the Lady Chaps who hit .350 during the 2009 season and scored 61 runs for the team which finished second in the national polls (after having won the national championship in 2008) and who earned perfect marks in the classroom throughout her collegiate career. With a degree in Communications and a thorough understanding of Coach Hays' philosophy and organizational flaws, she is the perfect complement to handle the business dealings of the program.
"I could not be more pleased with the three people who will be joining me at Tech. Interestingly, both Aly and Lisa were members of first-year collegiate programs and Kristie has spent the past year helping recruit for a first-time program. Those kinds of experiences are so helpful to programs. They should easily connect with what our student-athletes at Tech are trying to accomplish and the pressures faced by those players," Hays said.