For the second year in a row, the Nebraska softball coaching staff was honored as the Midwest Region Coaching Staff of the Year, the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) announced on Wednesday, June 25.
Head Coach Rhonda Revelle shared the award with Associate Head Coach Lori Sippel, Assistant Coach Diane Miller and Director of Softball Operations Katie Brown. A Revelle-led staff earned the regional coaching honor for the fourth time. The back-to-back honors are a first in school history. Revelle was also named the 2014 Big Ten Conference Coach of the Year.
The coaching staff led Nebraska to a share of its first Big Ten regular-season title and the seventh 40-win regular season in school history. The Huskers won a road regional for only the second time in school history, losing a pair of one-run games in the NCAA Super Regional against national runner-up Alabama. Nebraska made its postseason run despite having the fewest upperclassmen of any team in the NCAA Tournament. The Huskers also set school records with 18 road wins and 18 conference victories in 2014.
The pitching staff, led by Sippel, produced a pair of first-team all-region pitchers and an All-American for the second straight season. Tatum Edwards earned her second straight All-America honor after finishing with a 24-13 record and a 1.78 ERA. Emily Lockman became the first Husker pitcher to be a first-team all-region selection as both a freshman and sophomore after she compiled a 20-5 record with a 2.08 ERA in 2014. Led by Edwards and Lockman, Nebraska posted the nation's 13th-lowest ERA in 2014, while also finishing in the top 20 nationally in shutouts (18) and victories (44).
At the plate, Miller's offense set several school records in 2014. Led by twin All-America hitters Tatum and Taylor Edwards, the Husker offense posted the most home runs, RBIs and extra-base hits in school history. While also posting the top slugging percentage in Husker history, Nebraska shattered the program's home run record with 73 homers, 12 more than the previous record. Taylor Edwards hit 18 home runs to become Nebraska's all-time home run leader, as she ended her career with first-team All-America honors. Tatum Edwards added 14 home runs while taking home third-team All-America accolades.
The trio of Revelle, Sippel and Miller will be entering their seventh season together in 2015. Revelle will lead the Husker program for the 23rd season, while Sippel will serve on the NU staff for the 26th season. The newest addition to the staff, Miller will be in her seventh season at Nebraska next spring.