Riley adds former star Baltzell to staff

Published 7:22 am Thursday, October 27, 2016

Former Longwood University All-American catcher and two-time Big South Player of the Year Megan Baltzell has joined the Lancer coaching staff as a volunteer assistant coach, two-time Big South Coach of the Year Kathy Riley announced.

“It’s great to have Megan Baltzell join our coaching staff as an assistant after a year of coaching summer softball,” Riley said. “We’re putting together a staff that will give our players more attention and opportunities to expand their game.”

Megan Baltzell

Megan Baltzell

A native of Stafford, Baltzell will work primarily with the catchers and assist with hitting instruction. With the addition of Baltzell, Longwood becomes the second member of the conference to have at least four coaches.

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The 2014 and 2015 Big South Player of the Year and the 2015 Big South Female Athlete of the Year, Baltzell finished among the top-10 all-time in NCAA history with 76 career home runs, ranking among the top-three in the nation in 2013 (30) and 2015 (27).

“Megan has always had great knowledge of the game, and her career production at Longwood attests to that,” Riley said.

As Longwood’s first Division I All-American following 2013 — along with teammate Brooke Short — Baltzell is the all-time leader for 11 Longwood records, including home runs, walks, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, RBI, hits and runs scored. She was part of 144 career wins in her time in a Lancer uniform, which ranks third in Longwood history for a senior class.

“I’m stoked to get my coaching career started at my alma mater,” Baltzell said. “I wouldn’t want to start it anywhere else. This will be a new experience for me, and I’m excited to have the opportunity to teach the game.”

With her career batting average of .401, Baltzell ranks as Longwood’s all-time leader in the Division I era in career batting average, as she posted three consecutive seasons with an average of .400 or better.

A 2015 graduate of Longwood, Baltzell led the Lancers to two Big South Championships to go along with a regular season crown in her senior season where she helped the Lancers post series wins against all eight conference teams. Baltzell led the Lancers to their first NCAA Tournament victory over Virginia Tech in the 2015 NCAA Knoxville Regional.

In addition, Baltzell competed on the United States Women’s National Team and participated at the WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup in September, where she was among the Team USA leaders, batting either in the three-hole or cleanup in each game. Over the course of the tournament, she was 11-for-25 (.440) with three doubles and one home run to go along with eight runs scored and 14 RBIs. She recorded hits in six of the seven games Team USA played.