COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland head softball coach Julie Wright announced the addition of Tori Tyson and Victoria Hayward as assistant coaches for the 2017-18 season today. Tyson will serve as the Terrapin pitching coach after two-year stint at Cal State Fullerton, while Hayward will coach Maryland's hitters after serving two years on the UMass staff.
“I am thrilled to add both Tori and Victoria to our family,” said Wright. “Their combined knowledge, training, playing and coaching experiences, and energy will add so much to our team. Both are high character individuals whose work ethic and competitive spirit will leave huge impressions on our players. I cannot wait to get started!”
Tyson joins Maryland after helping lead the Titans to two straight NCAA Regional appearances and two Big West Conference Championships. Fullerton's pitchers thrived under Tyson, pitching 46 complete games with 24 shutouts while posting a team ERA under 2.70 the past two seasons.
Fullerton's Kelsey Kessler was named a 2017 first team All-Big West and second team NFCA All-Region selection, holding a league-best 1.02 ERA in 75.1 innings while leading the conference in wins.
Titans Sydney Golden and Desiree Ybarra benefited mightily from Tyson joining the coaching staff in 2016, as they were named Big West Freshman Pitcher of the Year and Big West Pitcher of the Year.
Golden was only the second Fullerton player to receive the honor in program history as she finished the year with a 17-5 record while posting the second-lowest ERA in the conference at 1.79. Fifth-year senior Ybarra posted a 1.80 ERA over 35 games and logged 151.1 innings of work while striking out 133 batters and walking just 55 to finish the year with a 15-6 record.
Before her time at Fullerton, Tyson served as an assistant coach at Bethune Cookman for the 2014 season. Tyson helped guide the Wildcats to 19 victories during the season and the pitching staff posted a 3.94 ERA under her tutelage. She also produced the 2015 Mid-Eastern Conference Pitcher of the Year who posted 19 wins and a 3.61 ERA in 256.0 innings.
Prior to her time there, Tyson was an assistant coach at Doane College in Crete, Neb. and helped lead the Tigers to a 25-22 overall record and a 13-5 mark in league play.
A 2012 graduate of the University of Nebraska, Tyson played three years of softball with the Cornhuskers and pitched in her first two seasons at Nebraska. Tyson made an appearance in the 2009 NCAA Regional for the Cornhuskers. She made 47 starts in 2010 and served as a team captain during the 2011 season when she played in the outfield.
WRIGHT ON TYSON: “Tori is one of the best, young pitching coaches in the game. She understands how to get the most out of her players as people, students, and athletes. Her knowledge and system are impressive and our pitching staff will greatly benefit from her.”
What They're Saying
“Tori excelled as a division I athlete and will continue to succeed in her coaching career by sharing her knowledge and passion for the game. Tori is a product of a softball family that knows how to compete. I believe she will bring out the best in every athlete she has the opportunity to inspire.” – Kelly Inouye-Perez, Head Coach UCLA
“Tori is an amazing asset for any program. She played at a high level, and has now shown consistently that she knows how to push her players and get the most out of them as a coach. Her pitching staff is always prepared, confident and composed. Tori has proven she knows how to scout, call a game and control the tempo throughout. I know there are big things to come for her, and I'm excited to see her in Maryland's dugout.” – Taria Flowers, Head Coach Cal State Northridge
Hayward comes to College Park after guiding UMass to back-to-back winning seasons in 2016 and 2017. UMass was one of the top hitting teams in the Atlantic 10 in 2017, as the Minutewomen advanced to the conference title game while finishing second in the regular season standings. Batters/position players earned nine all-conference selections under her guidance, while three UMass hitters garnered NFCA All-Region selections during her tenure.
Hayward spent the 2015 season as a graduate assistant at LSU under head coach Beth Torina. The Tigers opened the year with 25-consecutive victories and spent three weeks as the No. 1 ranked team in the country, before ending the season with a 52-14 record and a third-place finish at the Women's College World Series. LSU's coaching staff was named the Division I South Region Staff of the Year by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.
Hayward has been a member of the Canadian Senior National Team since 2009. When she made the squad in 2009 at 16 years old, she became the youngest player ever to join the senior team. She has been a mainstay in the outfield and has won six medals in international competition. Hayward was the 19th overall selection in the 2014 National Pro Fastpitch Draft by the Pennsylvania Rebellion.
Hayward participated in four NCAA Tournaments at the University of Washington. She was a 2014 All-American, a four-time All-Pac-12 selection and a three-time Academic All-Pac-12 honoree (2011-14). UW won four NCAA Regional Championships during her career and advanced to the Women's College World Series in 2013. She finished her career ranked 12th in average (.351), 10th in triples (7) and seventh in runs (176) while stealing a league-best 28 bases as a senior without committing an error all season.
WRIGHT ON HAYWARD: “Victoria's softball experiences will have a huge impact on our student-athletes. Her knowledge of the game and the fact that she is still playing will help our athletes grow and learn at an incredible rate. She will have an immediate impact on the success of our team.”
What They're Saying
“Victoria possess the skills necessary to be one of the great coaches in our game. The lessons she learned as a student-athlete here at Washington combined with what she's already done as a coach and a player at the international and profession levels, makes her an asset to any program who wants to compete for championships.” – Heather Tarr, Head Coach Washington
“Victoria has been with our national program for eight years and is a great young woman. She's become an exceptional world class ball player, and has put a lot of time into her craft. She is a smart, intuitive individual who has a strong passion for the game, and has excelled in her young coaching career.” – Mark Smith, Head Coach Team Canada