Jen Steele named new softball head coach

Anna Steinmetz
Courtesy of Delaware Athletics
Senior catcher Anna Steinmetz batting in a May 2018 game at the UD Softball Stadium.

BY
Senior Reporter

Former Marshall University softball head coach Jen Steele has been named the University of Delaware’s new head coach, the university announced Monday.

Steele spent one season at Marshall, leading the Thundering Herd to a 25-29-1 record and a first-round exit in the Conference USA tournament. Marshall announced on July 2 that Steele would not be returning to the school. The Herald-Dispatch reported that she resigned with two years left on her contract.

“I am extremely honored to be named the new softball coach at Delaware,” Steele said in a press release. “It became clear very quickly that the University of Delaware is a special place, and there is a lot of positive momentum right now.”

On May 29, Delaware announced that softball head coach John Seneca was fired. At the time, Delaware did not provide any reasoning for the firing.

Jen SteeleCourtesy of Delaware Athletics
Jen Steele takes over Delaware’s program after spending one year as head coach at Marshall.

Seneca, 54, took over midseason in 2015 following the abrupt firing of Jaime Wohlbach. He was named permanent head coach the following summer. He first joined the Blue Hens in 2012 as an assistant coach.

In a little over three seasons under Seneca, Delaware went 81-89 overall and 28-41 in conference play. Since the turn of the century, the Blue Hens have never finished higher than third in the CAA. Delaware went 18-31 overall and 8-13 in the CAA in 2018 and failed to make the conference tournament.

The Blue Hens turn now to Steele, a native of Manassas Park, Va., to rejuvenate the program. She is the eleventh head coach hired by Athletic Director Chrissi Rawak in the past 26 months.

“Her values are strongly aligned with UD, and she brings notable accomplishments as a head coach along with the proven ability to build successful programs,” Rawak stated in a press release. “Her energy, excitement for the sport, and commitment to recruiting great student-athletes make her a perfect fit to lead the softball program here at Delaware.”

Prior to joining Marshall, Steele was head coach at Jacksonville from 2015 through 2017. In her first season as head coach, Jacksonville made an appearance in the Atlantic Sun Tournament.

She previously coached as an assistant at George Mason and Longwood, her alma mater. She has also coached in the Division III ranks, earning coach of the year honors at Randolph College in Lynchburg, Va., in 2009.

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