FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Having guided the University of Arkansas softball team to unprecedented heights this past season, head coach Courtney Deifel, assistant coaches Yolanda McRae and Matt Meuchel and volunteer assistant Jordan Clark have been named the 2018 NFCA Division I South Region Staff of the Year. The Razorbacks finished the year with a 42-17 record and made the program’s first-ever NCAA Super Regional appearance.
The 11 regional staff honorees from around the country are now eligible for the NFCA Division I National Coaching Staff of the Year which is slated to be announced Wednesday, June 27.
Arkansas’ 42 wins are the third most in program history and most since 2000, and mark an 11-win increase from last year’s total. Two seasons removed from a one-win conference tally, the Razorbacks posted a 12-12 record in SEC and earned a No. 7 seed into the SEC Tournament where the team made a run to the semifinals for the first time since 2001.
On the heels of its strong start to postseason play, Arkansas earned a No. 13 national seed and hosted the program’s first NCAA Regional. The Razorbacks swept their way through the regional on their way to securing a spot in the NCAA Norman Super Regional.
In Tuesday’s release of the final national rankings of the season, Arkansas was positioned at No. 16 in the NFCA and USA Softball polls. The team also finished 17th in the final NCAA RPI.
The team’s success on the field resulted in six top-10 home attendance figures at Bogle Park. The Razorbacks finished the season with a 27-2 record on their home field, established a new program record for home wins in a single season. Part of Arkansas’ home triumphs included the program’s first three-game sweep of a ranked team (No. 20 Mississippi State) and its first-ever series win over Alabama.
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