WINCHESTER, Va. - Shenandoah University Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Bridget Lyons, Ph.D, announced Friday that Head Softball Coach Marlena Kotynski is departing Shenandoah at the end of May.
Kotynski leaves the program as the winningest coach in program history with 279 in 15 seasons as the Hornets head coach.
"I have been thinking about making a change for quite some time and basically decided prior to the start of this season that this spring would be my last," Kotynski said. "The past 15 seasons have been so rewarding and this is a good time to step away."
Taking over a program that had won just a combined 19 games in the previous four seasons, Kotynski quickly turned the program into a winner. She led SU to 13 wins in her first year, 15 in her second and by year three had the Hornets in the USA South Tournament championship contest.
The team won a pair of USA South Conference titles, a regular season championship in 2008 and a tournament championship in 2011.
The spring following that tournament championship, in which her squad advanced to the NCAA Division III Salisbury Regional and won its opening game versus Rowan (N.J.), the Hornets achieved their first-ever national ranking. SU spent one week in the top 25 in that 2012 season.
This season, SU had its best campaign in the past six years and led the Hornets into the ODAC Tournament for the first time since 2013. Her club won one game in the tournament, eliminating arch-rival Bridgewater on day two before falling to Emory and Henry.
"Marlena truly cares about her student-athletes and their well-being, Dr. Lyons stated. "I very much appreciate everything she has done for Shenandoah during her time here and I wish her well in the next chapter of her life."
Lyons added that the department will undertake a national search for a head softball coach with the goal of having the new person in place by the start of the 2019-20 academic year.