published Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

Sammi Parks new UTC softball pitching coach

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga has hired former Belmont University standout Sammi Parks as its softball pitching coach.

She succeeds Lee Dobbins, who took an assistant coaching job at Emory University during the summer.

The 2009 Belmont graduate is a Riverside, Calif., native who holds single-season records for innings (221), appearances (44), wins (12) and strikeouts (169) at the Nashville school. She has played overseas in New Zealand and Austria and helped coach the Austrian national team in 2009 and 2010.

"We wanted to bring a teaching coach into the program," UTC coach Frank Reed said. "She has been doing that the past three years. ... Her job over there was to teach as much as it was to play."

Parks will work with a young Lady Mocs pitching staff. Reigning Southern Conference player of the year Michelle Fuzzard returns, but freshmen Taylor Deason, Jennifer Garcia and Brittany Perez will be counted on to contribute with Kandice Irwin and Nikki Waters having used up their eligibility.

"I am really excited to begin my coaching career at Chattanooga," Parks said Monday in a release. "This is a great opportunity to assist in continuing the championship softball tradition. I look forward to the challenge of working with the younger pitchers on the team, because they have a lot of room to build and grow."

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