|Title:||Head Softball Coach|
|College:||Eastern Kentucky, 1992; Georgetown College, 2000|
Mark Montgomery will enter his third season at the helm of the Northern Colorado program in 2013. It will mark his 12th season overall as a collegiate head softball coach. He comes into the season with a 42-63 record with the Bears and a 330-320 (.508 pct.) career mark.
Last season, Montgomery's second with the Bears, was exciting and full of promise as a group of young Bears got out to one of the best starts in school-history -- winning seven of their first eight games. The Bears finished the season with a Division I school-record 25 wins and broke 21 school-records over the year. With a roster full of young talent -- including the 2011 national triples leader Melissa Marcovecchio -- the sky is the limit for Montgomery and his squad.
Montgomery was hired as Northern Colorado's third head softball coach since 1999 on Friday, June 11, 2010.
Montgomery, a Kentucky native who brings more than 20 years of softball coaching experience at the high school level and above in Kentucky and Louisiana, came to Greeley from Centenary, where he coached for eight seasons and was the school's all-time winningest softball coach.
In his inaugural season at the helm of the Northern Colorado program, Montgomery led the Bears to a 17-35 overall record. Under Montgomery's leadership, the team improved throughout the season and finished Pacific Coast play with a 13-7 record and a second-place finish in the Mountain Division. The Bears even started off conference play with wins in their first eight games.
His first season with the Bears proved to be a banner year in a number of ways for Montgomery, as he also notched his 300th career collegiate win against Utah Valley on March 22.
Montgomery comes into his second season with Northern Colorado with a 305-292 career coaching record and says he’s excited to continue the program’s growth and see it through to even greater heights. In his eight years at Centenary, he oversaw a similar ascension, brining the Ladies from an independent team to an NCAA Regional participant in 2004 and 2005.
“Taking over at Northern Colorado is an exceptional opportunity for me and my family because of the growth the university has shown over much of the last few years,” Montgomery said. “That growth is extremely exciting, and I’m grateful to now be a part of it. The Northern Colorado ceiling is so high right now, and it’s my aim to grow this program into one that is able to compete with some of the nation’s top programs.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity Mr. (Jay) Hinrichs has offered me, and I’m looking forward to this exciting new chapter in my life and my family’s life as we move west and become part of the Northern Colorado family.”
Centenary notched 30 or more wins in five of Montgomery’s eight seasons in Louisiana, and his 2004 squad tied the school record for victories in a single season with 36.
Centenary finished atop the Mid-Continent Conference (now The Summit League) in that 2004 campaign and advanced to an NCAA Regional, where top-ranked Arizona awaited. The Ladies came close to a shocker, holding a 1-0 lead through six innings, but their impressive run ended with a 2-1 loss to the Wildcats.
“Mark’s team executed a near perfect game plan (against us),” said Arizona assistant coach Larry Ray. “I have yet to see a team devise a defense that has shut down our speed game like he did then.”
While at Centenary, Montgomery coached 23 all-conference players, two conference newcomers of the year, one conference pitcher of the year, two conference tournament MVPs and several conference all-tournament players.
Montgomery also served as Centenary’s Assistant Athletic Director for Development, overseeing a major renovation to the Ladies’ Softball Complex in 2009, including new dugouts, sound system, and a brick backstop. He was also instrumental in the start up of Centenary's C-Club, the athletic department’s primary booster club, and securing the Ladies’ membership into The Summit League.
Montgomery joined Centenary in August of 2002 after spending the two previous years as the head coach at Georgetown College in Kentucky. He guided the Tigers to a 72-31 record in two seasons, while advancing to the NAIA Regional tournament both years. He was named Mid-South Conference Coach of the Year in 2002.
Prior to Georgetown, Montgomery served as an assistant coach in 2000 at the University of Kentucky. Throughout the 1990s, Montgomery was a successful high school coach at Lafayette High School in Lexington, Ky., and Richmond Model High School in Richmond, Ky.
While at Lexington, Montgomery led his team to seven district titles, five regional titles and a state championship. He was later inducted into the Kentucky High School Softball Hall of Fame in June of 2004.
Montgomery received his bachelor’s degree in history education from Eastern Kentucky in 1992 and his masters degree in secondary education from Georgetown College in 2000. He and his wife Melanie have three daughters, Bailey, Emma and Adrienne.
Mark Montgomery's Division I collegiate coaching resume
Georgetown College - NAIA (HC)
|2002||Georgetown College - NAIA
||Advanced to NCAA Regional;
fell 2-1 to #1 Arizona
|2005||Centenary (HC)||31-28 (.525)||Advanced to NCAA Regional
|2006||Centenary (HC)||31-25 (.554)
|2007||Centenary (HC)||22-27 (.448)|
|2008||Centenary (HC)||34-26 (.567)
|2009||Centenary (HC)||32-23 (.582)
|2010||Centenary (HC)||10-34 (.227)
|2011||Northern Colorado (HC)
||First year at Northern
Colorado; passed 300-win plateau
|2012||Northern Colorado (HC)||25-28 (.472)