JOPLIN, Mo. -- Missouri Southern Softball Head Coach Bill Gray has announced the hiring of Jenna Smart as assistant softball coach for the 2013 season.
"Jenna will make an immediate impact having pitched herself and being successful at the Division II level will give her instant credibility with our athletes," Gray said. "Her energy for the game and pitching will have an immediate impact our pitching staff and team. I am very happy to have her as part of our staff and looking forward to having her on campus and getting prepared for the upcoming season."
Smart comes to Missouri Southern after three years at Iowa Central Community College in Ft. Dodge, Iowa where she worked with the pitching staff and was the recruiting coordinator for the Tritons. While at Iowa Central Smart's pitching staff set a new team record in 2010 with a 1.59 ERA while the team went 55-10. In 2011, the Tritons staff complied a 2.88 ERA while going 45-13 and in 2012 the staff lowered the ERA by a full run (1.89) while finishing 51-9.
Smart is ecstatic on the opportunity to come to Southern and help Gray bring the program back to the level its fans and alumni are used to.
"I am thrilled to be a part of Missouri Southern softball," Smart said. "Coach Gray has a lot of success in his career and I am excited to learn from him. MSSU is a great place; it is will respected and most importantly has a family atmosphere. I hope to bring energy to the program. I am a very competitive and energetic person and I am excited to meet the girls and hit the ground running this fall."
Prior to Iowa Central, Smart was a Graduate Assistant at her alma mater Delta State where she served under two head coaches. In 2008 under then coach David Kuhn the Lady Statesmen went 33-26 with a 3.46 ERA. In 2009 Smart's pitching staff lowered its ERA to a 2.92 while going 27-24, in new head coach Casey Bourgoyne first season with the Lady Statesmen.
Prior to DSU, Smart served as an assistant coach with the Bayou Academy helping lead BA to their second straight Mississippi Private School Association State Championship.
Smart is a 2006 graduate of Delta State University with a BS in health, physical education and recreation business. While with the Lady Statesmen, Jenna helped DSU to a 160-77 record, while going 33-18 personally inside the circle. In 2006, Smart was seventh in the nation in saves with five. She is in the top ten in every career pitching category for the Lady Statesmen as she is tied for sixth in games pitched (96), fourth in ERA (2.17), sixth in wins (36), fourth in strikeouts (330), and ninth in innings pitched (374.1). Smart is also in the top ten in five single season categories, ninth in ERA (1.59 in 2004), fourth in strikeouts (133 in 2003), tied for fourth in complete games (25 in 2003), complete games (25 in 2003), and is tied for seventh in appearances (35 in 2006).
Smart graduated with her master's degree in health, physical education and recreation in 2009 from Delta State. She is a native of Morris, Illinois and will reside in Webb City