Jessica Pistole left ten months ago for an NCAA Division I program at the University of San Diego. Before that she led the SOU team for five seasons, three consecutive NAIA World Series appearances, and their first national championship on top of a 52-8 record.
“SOU and Ashland are home to our family,” Pistole said. “When the season ended and we had a chance to step back from softball, we realized this is where the many pieces of family life and coaching work for us. As the conversations unfolded and the opportunity was presented, it felt like the right move to make. We have so much gratitude to coach Mayben, Matt Sayre, and Dr. Linda Schott for such support in welcoming us back.”
Pistole informed both teams of her decision Sunday evening. She was offered the position in March, before SOU’s hiring freeze. However, due to COVID-19 related issues delayed the announcement until now.
Pistole has a 219-82 record at SOU making her the program’s winningest coach. She’s also a three-time Cascade Christian Conference Coach of the year.
The 2020 Raiders, who were 9-0 in conference play when the season ended, had returned all but one regular starter from their championship team. Seven seniors, including three All-Americans, were on the roster, but all will be eligible to return for another season if they so choose.
Devin Gooden graduated from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication with a Master’s degree in Sports Journalism.
She has spent most of her life in Atlanta, Georgia and received her undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia in Business Management.
When she’s not reporting, Devin practices yoga, reads thriller novels and loudly cheers for her beloved Georgia Bulldawgs.