Collins named new CSM softball coach
Previously assistant to former coach Cleary
After one year as the head softball coach at nearby Lackey High School in Charles County, the College of Southern Maryland recently named former CSM assistant coach Becca Collins as its head softball coach for the 2019 spring season.
Collins, who had been the assistant softball coach under former head coach Jim Cleary from 2014-17, returns after one season at Lackey where she guided the Chargers to the Class 1A South Region title. A graduate of La Plata High School and a four-year starter at Concord University (W.Va.), Collins is eager to continue her coaching career at CSM next spring.
“I am ecstatic,” Collins said in a CSM news release announcing the hiring. “I feel ready to hit it hard and get going. Coming out of college, I figured JUCO is a good start because you want to push girls who want to go to the four-year universities. I realized it was the perfect situation to start my college coaching career.”
“CSM athletics welcomes Becca back to the campus,” CSM athletic director Michelle Ruble said. “She was an exceptional assistant coach here for three years under Jim’s supervision and left us to gain head coaching experience. She did an exceptional job with Lackey last year and we are very lucky to have her back at CSM. She has put together a great coaching staff and they are ready to get fall ball underway.”
Collins takes over the helm from her predecessor and former coach Cleary, who resigned earlier this summer. Cleary guided the Hawks to the Region XX title in 2016, the school’s first such title since 2001. The team was 11-25 overall a year ago, 7-11 in the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference.
“We were sad to learn that Jim needed to resign as our head softball coach and leave the program as he worked very hard on the facilities and recruiting alike,” Ruble said. “Jim would spend hours working on the field to ensure it was in perfect condition and hours in the community talking about CSM softball to potential recruits and their families. He was always easy to spot in his CSM shirt and hat and he will be missed.”
Collins enjoyed a superb playing career at Concord and left her mark on the program. She became the school’s all-time leader in hits (188) and games played (180) and she concluded her playing days with a .324 batting average, including a .380 mark her senior year, and she finished second in school history in runs scored (118), third in stolen bases (35) and fifth in RBIs (78).
“The first lesson I have learned as a coach is patience because they are not going to get it right the first time,” Collins said. “When you do what your team needs you to do, you’re more likely to be successful. It makes you more versatile and a better person. With the CSM [softball] program, I feel like we are starting over. After the Hawks rough season [in 2018], sometimes it’s good to start over and build from the ground up.”
The College of Southern Maryland softball team will have ample new faces when the team takes the field for the 2019 season as former assistant Becca Collins takes over for former head coach Jim Cleary, far left, who resigned the position earlier this summer.
Former College of Southern Maryland assistant softball coach Becca Collins will return to the squad after recently being named the head softball coach for the 2019 spring season after spending the previous season as the head softball coach at Lackey High School where she guided the Chargers to the Class 1A South Region title.