While enjoying herself on vacation in California recently, former Duncan Lady Demon softball player Courtne St. Clair got some news she couldn’t believe.
St. Clair learned that she had been named the first assistant coach for the Southeastern Oklahoma State softball team.
“It’s incredible,” St. Clair said about the announcement. “This was a long wait for me and I’m just beyond words and so blessed about this opportunity. With everything SOSU has done for me and the faith they have shown in me, it’s something you don’t see very often anymore. I plan to show them they made the right choice and reward them with hard work and good results. I’d always dreamed about being an assistant coach but never thought it would be here at Southeastern.”
After graduating from Seminole State University in 2009 where she helped lead her team to a third place finish in the NJCAA National Tournament, in addition to being a two-time all region selection, St. Clair thought her days as a softball player were through.
But, following some visits with friends and current SOSU head coach Ron Faubion, St. Clair was back on the diamond representing the Savage Storm softball team during the 2011-12 season.
St. Clair showed she still had plenty left in the tank as she completed two standout seasons for SOSU, starting in 30 of 42 games during the 2011 season, where she hit .219 with one home run and two RBI along with stealing 10 bases.
During her senior season, the former DHS standout turned it up a notch, earning All-Great American Conference honors along with All-Academic Conference honors.
St. Clair finished the season hitting .312 while totaling 25 RBI.
Following the season, St. Clair made the transition over to the coaching staff, serving as a student assistant last season which saw the Savage Storm win the Great American Conference championship, finishing the season with 45 wins and nine losses, and a berth in the NCAA Regional tournament in Mankato, Minnesota.
“Last season I thought we had a strong chance of winning the national title,” St. Clair said. “If our girls can learn from the mistakes of last season, and apply it to this season, then they have a good chance to be successful.”
SOSU will only be losing four seniors from last season’s squad, and St. Clair believes they have the right tools to be a championship contender this season.
“These girls have a lot of chemistry already, since we’re not losing many players,” she said. “The biggest thing to overcome is going to be everyone competing without animosity. Obviously there’s going to be some young girls wanting those spots, but everyone is just going to have to work hard and have chemistry.”
St. Clair added she’s looking forward to the experience of coaching at SOSU.
“I’m just excited and ready to help apply my knowledge,” she said. “Just getting to be around the girls in a different sense and help them out is going to be great.”