“I was pleased with the progress our softball program has made this past season under Coach Gregory,” Hocutt said. “We look forward to continued success under her leadership.”
Gregory, who was named the seventh head coach of the program on June 6, 2014, received a five-year contract extension that will now last through the 2024 season. “I am so thrilled to be staying home in Lubbock and continuing our mission to build this program to national prominence,” Gregory said. “Texas Tech is a very special place and my family and I are surrounded by extraordinary people committed to that same mission. The future is bright!”
Gregory’s 2019 campaign marked the best of her tenure, as well as one of the most successful runs in program history.
She led the Red Raiders to their first NCAA Regional Tournament appearance since 2012 and helped Tech to a record 14 straight weeks ranked in the top 25. The Red Raiders received their first top-10 ranking in program history and also spent six weeks among the nation’s top-15 teams. The Red Raiders’ 42-16 record tied for the second-highest win total in program history and six student-athletes garnered All-Big 12 recognition. Tech finished fourth in the Big 12 and earned its first three-game sweep over Baylor to date.
Tech thrived in 2019 and made major strides both offensively and defensively. The squad was one home run shy of tying the school record of 66 in a season and their 307 RBI mark ranks as the second-most in program history. The team held a .319 batting average at the plate, scored 352 runs, collected 483 hits and 203 walks while the Red Raider pitching staff tallied a combined 341 strikeouts – all coming in at No. 2 in the school record book.
Defensively, Tech posted the fewest errors in program history and tied the school record of 27.0 consecutive shutout innings. Gregory’s Red Raiders stunned the nation with a 13-game win streak to start the year, which included statement wins over No. 13 Arizona State, No. 17 Oregon, No. 21 Auburn, Wisconsin and a pair of wins over Drake. Tech posted 12 shutouts in 2019 as well as 13 run-rules. The 2018 Red Raiders compiled 31 wins, including its highest-ranked win since 2014, on its way to a fifth-place finish at the 2018 Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship and an automatic berth into the National Invitational Softball Championship.
Starting as many as six freshmen in the lineup at times, the Red Raiders used their athleticism to set a school mark with 19 triples on the year while also leading the Big 12 in stolen bases. Tech made tremendous progress defensively throughout the year, posting a 35-inning errorless streak that was the best stretch since 2011. The 2018 squad earned votes in the polls (twice) for the first time since 2013 and was just the second team in program history to win six straight road games.
The team took home several individual accolades as well, including the program’s first National Player of the Week honor (twice), four Big 12 weekly awards from three individuals and six All-Big 12 selections. The 2017 season saw 19 wins, 51 home runs and 13 triples from the Red Raiders. Three student-athletes picked up All-Conference laurels while nine Red Raiders were named to Academic All-Big 12 teams. Jessica Hartwell earned the team’s highest honor with an NFCA All-Region Third-Team award and one Red Raider earned CoSIDA Academic All-District distinction. Gregory ground out 23 wins in 2016, which included wins over No. 22 California, UNLV, Illinois State, Iowa State and a series sweep of Oklahoma State in Big 12 action.
The Red Raiders finished sixth in the league and four Red Raiders earned All-Big 12 nods. Former Red Raider Kierra Miles highlighted Gregory’s crew with Second Team NFCA All-Region honors. After being named head coach in June of 2014, Gregory guided the Red Raiders to a 25-26 record including a 9-9 mark in Big 12 play in her first year at the helm. Gregory’s team finished strong down the stretch with three Big 12 series victories including taking two of three from Texas for the first time in a single season in Texas Tech history. Two of Tech’s four NFCA All-American’s – Jessica Hartwell and Karli Hamilton – have come under the direction of Gregory and she has guided the Red Raiders to 12 NFCA All-Region nods as well as 21 All-Conference honors.
For all the latest information on the Texas Tech softball team, visit TexasTech.com or follow @TexasTechSB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.