2020 Speaker Bios – Softball
The Pennsylvania Baseball & Softball Coaches Clinic, presented by the Art of Coaching, takes tremendous pride in the quality of speakers that present to our attendees each year. We conduct extensive research and recruit individuals that come highly recommended as clinicians. We strive to to make our roster of speakers a blend of successful veteran coaches along with some young “rising stars” of the coaching profession. As we celebrate our 34th annual clinic, we thank all of our loyal attendees and we look forward to providing the coaching community with an excellent event for many years to come.
LONNI ALAMEDA - Florida St. University
Over the last five years, Alameda has guided FSU back into the ranks of the elite in the softball world. After seven Women’s College World Series appearances from 1987-2004, the Seminoles returned to the final site of women’s collegiate softball three times in the last five seasons (2014, 2016 and 2018), including winning the program’s first NCAA National Championship just a season ago. Florida State has earned six ACC regular season titles in a row, five straight ACC Tournament titles and now owns 16 ACC Championships. FSU has played in the NCAA postseason every year under Alameda, and is one of only nine schools to participate in the NCAA Tournament in every season since 2000. During her tenure, Alameda has led the Seminoles to nine ACC Championship game appearances with titles in 2011, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. While at FSU, Alameda has collected eight Coach of the Year Awards, including the 2018 National Coaching Staff of the Year Award. She owns five ACC Coach of the Year Awards, one behind the all-time leader, former PA Coaches Clinic presenter, JoAnne Graf. In 2018, FSU finished with a 58-12 record, the most wins in a single season under Alameda, and it marked the fourth time in the last five seasons that FSU topped the 50-win plateau during her career.
Alameda carries an impressive coaching resume on the international level as well after helping aid in the development of the Canadian National Team from 2004 to 2008. That resume also includes stints at UNLV, Stanford and Barry University (Miami Shores, Fla.) An all-around great athlete, Alameda began her collegiate career as a pitcher at St. Mary’s University (San Antonio, Texas) where she led the Rattlers to the NAIA Tournament in her only season. She later transferred to Oklahoma in 1989 where she played softball and volleyball for the Sooners.
Lonni Alameda’s 2020 TOPICS:
Getting to ‘NOLE’ Coach Alameda (Feature Presentation)
Teamwork to Make the Dream Work – Creating a Winning Culture
The Bench – How to Properly Develop Team Management
DRILLS SESSION: From the Bullpen to the Circle – Elevate Your Pitching Game
DRILLS SESSION: How to “Softball” – Drills to Run a Successful Practice
NATASHA WATLEY – UCLA Hall of Famer/Multiple-Time World Champion
If you were to write down some of the greatest players in the history of the game, by any measure, Watley’s name would certainly grace the list. Watley’s career includes stints with the UCLA Bruins, the USA Softball Women’s National Team and USSSA Pride. She played shortstop and first base while helping UCLA win a national championship in 2003 and Team USA claim a gold medal in 2004 at the Summer Olympics in Athens. She is the first African-American female to play on the United States Softball team in the Olympics. A two–time Pan American Gold Medalist, three-time World Champion, and four-time World Cup Champion, Watley is also the career batting average leader in the National Pro Fastpitch. While playing for Team USA in 2004, Watley led the team in at-bats, hits, stolen bases and was third on the team with a .400 batting average. She also broke the Olympic record for stolen bases with five in nine games. She owns numerous records for the Bruins and is one of only a handful of NCAA Division I players players to bat at least .400 with 300 hits, 200 runs and 100 stolen bases. During her career at UCLA, Watley collected numerous awards including Pac-10 "Player of The Year" and the Honda Broderick Cup for "Best Collegiate Female Athlete" and "Best Collegiate Softball Player." In her four years as a starter for the Bruins, she finished tops in career hits, triples, runs and stolen bases. She ranked second in career batting average (.450) and top-10 in doubles, slugging and on-base percentages. Watley holds the single-season record for hits (112) and is currently ranked fourth in Pac-10 history. Watley is listed seventh on the all-time NCAA record books with 115 hits in a single season. She was also the first UCLA Bruin to have two 100+ hit seasons. For her efforts, she was inducted to the UCLA Hall of Fame in 2014. After collecting numerous awards and accolades during her eight-year professional career, Watley officially retired in 2017.
Natasha Watley's 2019 Topics:
Dream is Free, Hustle Sold Separately (Feature Presentation)
How to Build a “Game Changer”- Basics to Becoming a Triple Threat
DRILLS SESSION: Slapping 101, 201, 301
DRILLS SESSION: Baserunning Tools & Tricks
MICKEY DEAN – Auburn University
A veteran in the coaching community, Dean comes to the PA Coaches Clinic after helping the Tigers reach to the NCAA Regional Finals for the fifth time in the past six seasons. Dean was hired by Auburn prior to the start of the 2018 season after a stellar five year stint at James Madison. During the 2018 campaign, Dean collected his 500th career victory while leading Auburn to a 15-0 start, tied for the best start in school history. In 13 years at the collegiate level, Dean has coached nine NCAA Tournament teams, including one super regional participant, and won nine conference championships. While at James Madison, the Elkton, Va native won over 80% of his games. The Dukes broke 104 program records, including over 40 pitching records while boasting one of the nation's top staffs. Prior to his reign at James Madison, Dean spent six seasons as the head coach at Radford where he took the Highlanders to their first-ever NCAA Tournament appearances in 2009 and 2010. He also spent time at Akron (2001-02), Indiana (2002-04) and Longwood (2005-06).
Mickey Dean’s 2020 Topics:
Pitching – Year Round Training
Defense an Evolution
DRILLS: My Favorite Pitching Drills
DRILLS: Developing Your Rise Ball
JENNY TOPPING – Gold Medal Training
A four-time NCAA First Team All-American (one year at the University of Washington, three at Cal State Fullerton), Topping holds numerous school records for both universities. She is one of nine NCAA players to bat .400, drive in 200 RBIs on at least 50 home runs and an .800 slugging percentage for a career. Her phenomenal collegiate career landed her a spot on Team USA’s famed 2004 Olympic gold-medal squad with fellow PA Coaches Clinic presenter, Natasha Watley. Appearing on the cover of Sports Illustrated, Team USA was dubbed the “Real Dream Team” by the magazine after outscoring its opponents 51-1 in nine games. Topping and her teammates were inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame in 2012. After the Athens Olympics, the former catcher moved on to the professional ranks becoming a National Pro Fastpitch champion and all-star selection for the Akron Racers in 2005. She also played two seasons in Japan before eventually founding Gold Medal Training in California.
Jenny Topping’s 2020 Topics:
How to Be a Better Catcher: Throwing/Footwork
Fear Based Coaching vs. Freedom Coaching
Catchers Plays at the Plate
DRILLS SESSION: Favorite Hitting Drills
JENNA HALL – University of Pittsburgh
After completing her seventh season as an assistant with Ohio State, Hall was recently hired as hitting coach at Pitt. During the 2019 campaign at OSU, Hall helped the Buckeyes reach the NCAA Tournament for the fourth consecutive season. Ohio State finished Big Ten play with a 17-6 record, the most conference wins since 1994. In 2015, she helped the Buckeye’s offense rewrite the record books as they set school marks for batting average (.348), home runs (74) and runs scored (380). Ohio State also led the Big Ten in batting average as 12 players hit .300 or better. Prior to her time at Ohio State, Hall was an assistant under former PA Coaches Clinic presenter and current Pitt Head Coach, Jodi Hermanek, at Ohio University. While at Ohio, Hall led three of the best Ohio offensive lineups in school history during the 2009, 2010 and 2012 campaigns, respectively, as the Bobcats broke school records for most home runs (47), RBIs (255) and runs scored (293) in a single season. As a player, Hall was equally impressive. She finished her career at Illinois as the all-time record holder for best career and single-season batting averages. She is also the program’s all-time single-season fielding percentage record holder. As a senior, she led the nation in walks and was a finalist for the USA Softball Player of the Year Award. Hall concluded her playing career in the professional ranks as a member of the Philadelphia Force in the National Pro Fastpitch League
Jenna Hall's 2020 Topics:
Understanding & Teaching Timing in Hitting
Competitive Practice Drills to Build a Better Offense
DRILLS: Lower Half Awareness and Sequencing
DRILLS: My Favorite Offensive Drills
JENNIFER PROBST - Millersville University
In just four seasons, Probst has taken the Millersville softball program to heights they haven’t seen in quite sometime. Probst has led the Marauders to the postseason twice while posting winning-records in the PSAC East as many times--a feat never before accomplished in the team’s previous 31 seasons.
In her first year with Millersville, Probst's Marauders came within two wins of the program record for victories. In 2018, Probst's Marauders climbed as high as No. 5 in the NCAA Atlantic Regional rankings. Under her leadership, Millersville set a single-season record for home runs, RBIs, runs scored, doubles, triples and slugging percentage.
A two-time Coach of the Year, Probst came to Millersville after compiling 150 wins and a MAC Freedom Championship in six seasons at Misericordia. During that time, her teams played in three championship games and advanced to the postseason five times. Misericordia ranked in the top three of the MAC Freedom in team ERA in each of her six seasons while leading the league in homeruns three times.
Jennifer Probst's 2020 Topics:
#TipAndRip - The Basics of Our Swing/Swinging Big
Favorite Hitting Drills/How We Warm Up With PVC
DRILLS SESSION: Team Fielding Drills: Keeping Everyone Involved
DRILLS SESSION: Circuits With a Purpose (Examples of Our Favorite Launch Angle Circuit and Bat Speed Circuit)
CLARISA CROWELL – Miami (OH) University
Crowell returns to the PA Coaches Clinic after helping guide Miami (OH) to its first regular season Mid-American Conference Championship in program history. In addition, Crowell captured her first MAC Coach of the Year honor. In seven seasons with the Redhawks, she’s collected nearly 200 wins and just shy of 100 MAC victories while leading the club to the MAC Tournament every season during her tenure. The 2019 team recorded the best win percentage in MAC games in program history and tied for the most MAC wins in a single season. Crowell came to Miami from Oklahoma State University, where she spent six seasons as an assistant coach. Her resume also includes stints at Syracuse and Miami’s conference rival, Ohio. A standout pitcher and third baseman during her playing days, Crowell is a member of the Virginia Tech All Sports Hall of Fame.
Clarisa Crowell’s 2020 Topics:
Developing an Elite Pitching Staff
Championship Season: The Importance of Being Intentional in Building Team Culture
Year-Round Training With the RedHawks
DRILLS SESSION: Practice Drills: RedHawk Edition
GENE ZANNETTI – Winning Mindset
Designed to help individuals and teams reach their full potential in sports, school and life, Winning Mindset was developed by former nationally ranked, All-Ivy League wrestlers, Gene Zannetti and his brother Jeff. After studying the best athletes, coaches, teams and experts in the world to learn the secrets of performance success, the Zannetti’s originally launched their venture as “Wrestling Mindset.” The company has since expanded their systematic mindset training into all sports, business and weight loss. Winning Mindset coaches have worked with thousands of athletes, teams, professionals & coaches at all levels including the Men’s & Women’s USA Olympic Team, UFC fighters, high school state champions, and collegiate national champions. Zannetti graduated with a Psychology degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He has two masters degrees; one in Sport Psychology and the other in Clinical Psychology. He is a certified School Psychologist, Personal Trainer and Nutritionist. Zannetti’s masters degree thesis (Perfectionism & Anxiety) has been published in the International Journal of Wrestling Sciences.
Gene Zannetti’s 2020 Topics:
Building the Predator Mindset on the Field
DRILLS SESSION: Five Questions Every Coach Needs to Ask
DRILLS SESSION: Two Great Exercises to Overcome Inconsistency