Bill Gray announces resignation

Press Release MSSU:

Missouri Southern Director of Athletics Jared Bruggeman has announced that softball coach Bill Gray has announced his resignation, effective June 30.

Gray coached seven seasons at MSSU and in that time, had a record of 149-208-1 as the head coach of the Lions. In his career, Gray has an overall record of 345-354-1 as a collegiate head coach. Adding in his time as a coach at the junior college level, Gray has an overall record of 416-421-1.

Gray had his best season at the helm of the Lions in 2011 when the team went 32-22 and finished in fourth-place in the MIAA regular-season standings. It was the first 30-win season for the program since 2002 and the squad had five All-MIAA players and saw a record fall as Nicole Reed set the single-season record for strikeouts in a season, surpassing Britany Hargis, with 225.

This season, four Lions earned All-MIAA honors as Myranda Stewart, Brooke Swadley, Kathryn Goins-Osburn and Alana Hester all earned honorable mention accolades. The Lions also set a new single-game record with six home runs in a game against Rogers State.

In 2014, the Lions went 26-24 overall, giving Southern its second winning season in three years. The Lions got off to an 11-4 start to the year, their best start since 2001, picking up Gray’s 100th win at Southern in the process in a 10-9 win over Illinois-Springfield on March 3, 2013. Throughout the course of the season, the Lions defeated three ranked teams, beating 2013 Division II Softball National Champion Central Oklahoma 11-3 in five innings, and NCAA Tournament qualifiers Fort Hays State 9-8 and Winona State 1-0.

“I want to thank coach Gray for his tireless dedication to the program for the past seven years,” Bruggeman said. “His leadership has helped lead to the improvement in the facilities for the softball program, and he has helped mold several young student-athletes into fine representatives of Missouri Southern for years to come. I wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors

A nationwide search for Gray’s replacement will begin immediately.