Virginia Tech '02
Holding an impressive four-year run, culminating in a Mid-American Conference Tournament Championship and NCAA appearance in 2016, Clarisa Crowell returns for her fifth season in charge of the RedHawk softball team.
Having seen improvement each year, the 2016 year was Crowell's best yet as she led Miami to a 35-23 overall record and a 15-7 record in MAC games. The `Hawks fell only a half game short of the MAC regular season title. Miami made up for that with a perfect 4-0 record in the MAC Tournament to earn its fourth-ever conference crown, and a spot in the NCAA Tournament. At the NCAA Regional in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the RedHawks capped off a fantastic season by defeating 23rd-ranked Notre Dame, 3-2.
As a team, Miami broke six offensive school records in 2016. The team scored more runs (302), averaged more runs per game (5.21), had more RBIs (274), doubles (83), home runs (56) and walks (200) then any previous Red and White softball squad. In addition, the RedHawks fielding percentage of .977 was a new school record, and ranked seventh in the country.
Well known for taking an active role in service projects throughout the school year, the softball team was honored with the Hal Jasper award in 2016, given to the team that does the most to help the community.
Under Crowell's watch, several Miami student-athletes were honored during the 2016 campaign. Senior outfielder Taylor Shuey became the first softball player in school history to be named MAC Player of the Year after breaking the Miami career RBI record with 114. Shuey was joined by freshman first basemen Johniann Wahl (who drove in a team-leading 47 RBIs, second-most single-season in school history) on the NFCA All-Mideast Region teams. Crowell saw five players earn All-MAC honors. Shuey was joined on the All-MAC First Team by senior pitcher Amber Logemann and freshman shortstop Michaela Schlattman. Wahl was joined on the second team by junior catcher Lauren Anderson. After stellar MAC Tournament performances in leading the RedHawks to the championship, Logemann and Schlattman were placed on the All-Tournament squad. Logemann was named the overall MAC Tournament MVP after having one of the best single-week performances in school history. During that week she was 4-0 with a 0.65 ERA in 32.1 innings pitched.
After such a successful campaign, Crowell signed a multi-year contract extension in June that will keep her in Oxford for years to come.
In Crowell's third season in 2015, the RedHawks were 32-24 overall and 13-7 in the MAC, which was good for a third place finish. Crowell saw three RedHawks earn All-MAC honors, as senior outfielder Tiyona Marshall and junior pitcher Amber Logemann were selected to the First Team, and senior third baseman/pitcher Remy Edwards was selected to the Second Team as a utility pitcher.
Marshall was also named to the NFCA All-Mideast Region First Team after setting school records in hits (86), runs scored (50) and batting average (.446).
Crowell serves as the team's pitching coach, and has seen her staff improve each year. In particular Amber Logemann had a stellar final two seasons as a member of the Red and White. As a senior in 2016, Logemann was a strong staff ace in leading the `Hawks to the title. As a junior, Logemann finished with a 27-11 record and a 1.93 ERA. In MAC play in 2015, Logemann went 12-4 with a 0.98 ERA. She led the league in ERA, while finishing tied for first in victories. Her 27 overall wins was tied for the second-most single-season victories in Miami history.
In the past four years, nine players have been named to the All-MAC First Team, five to the All-MAC Second Team and five to the All-MAC Freshman Team. In 2014, Kristy Arbour received national attention in two different NCAA categories. She was the NCAA leader in sacrifice hits, while also earning the NCAA accolade of being the toughest hitter to strike out with only two in 158 at bats.
Miami has also excelled in the classroom and in the community under Crowell's watch. The RedHawks finished with their highest GPA in team history after the spring 2016 semester. Over the past four years, two student-athletes (Brandi Hernandez and Megan Mattera) have earned the MAC President's Award, which is awarded for graduating with a 3.5 GPA or higher, while three (Kelsey Fredericks, Hernandez and Mattera) have earned the Commissioner's Award for having a 3.5 GPA or higher for two semesters. In addition, four student-athletes have been named to the MAC All-Academic/Distinguished Scholar Athlete Team, while an impressive 23 student-athletes have been named a total of 33 times to the annual MAC Honor Roll.
Crowell came to Miami from Oklahoma State University, where she spent six seasons as an assistant coach. She was primarily responsible for the pitchers and catchers. During her tenure the Cowgirl staff garnered several different awards. In 2010 both of her pitchers, senior Anna Whiddon and freshman Kat Espinosa, earned spots on both the All-Big 12 and All-Midwest Region teams. Whiddon garnered the Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division I National Player of the Week award. In 2011, Espinosa was named to the All-Big 12 First Team. She also coached catcher Courtney Totte who was an All-Big 12 First Team selection and a Third-Team All-American, and Sam Heinlen a Second-Team All-Big 12 selection. In 2011, Crowell helped lead the Cowgirls back to national prominence as Oklahoma State returned to the College World Series for the first time since 1998. The Cowgirls finished the season ranked eighth in both the final NFCA Coaches Poll and the ESPN.com/USA Softball Poll. The Cowgirl coaching staff was also named the Midwest Region Coaching Staff of the Year.
Prior to her time at Oklahoma State, Crowell spent the 2006 season as an assistant coach at Syracuse University. In her one season at Syracuse, the Orange had four players earn All-Region status and five players were named All-Conference. Syracuse finished fourth in the Big East, led by All-American and Big East Player of the Year Alexis Switenko, and Tonye McCorkle, the Big East Co-Rookie of the Year. Crowell began her coaching career at Miami's conference rival Ohio, where she spent two years as an assistant for the Bobcats.
Crowell is a graduate of Virginia Tech, where she was a four-year letterwinner, and a three-time all-conference player for the Hokies. She earned her first honor as a freshman in the Atlantic-10 as a pitcher and third baseman. She again earned All-Conference honors as a sophomore outfielder and pitcher, showing her versatility on defense. She moved back to the infield her senior season and was named Second-Team All-Big East, hitting .367 on the year. Crowell was also named First-Team All-Region and was voted the Hokies' best offensive player. She was named Virginia All-State three times and became the first player in history to earn the honor at two different positions. In 2013, Crowell was honored with the most prestigious accolade of her career, earning a spot in the Virginia Tech All Sports Hall of Fame.
Crowell graduated from Virginia Tech in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. She earned a Master's of Science in Recreation and Sport Sciences degree from Ohio University in 2005, graduating Magna Cum Laude.