LAFAYETTE — The Louisiana-Lafayette softball coaching staff will look vastly different in 2016.
The school Thursday officially announced the addition of two members of the staff: Associate head coach Lana Bowers and assistant coach Chris Malveaux both have worked on coach Mike Lotief’s staff before.
Those two replace Lisa Norris and T.J. Hubbard, who both left the program; Norris is playing in the National Pro Fastpitch league, and Hubbard is now an assistant at Kansas.
The Cajuns went 42-12 last season and advanced to their fourth consecutive super regional, where they were swept by Auburn.
Bowers’ and Malveaux’s hirings are not yet official; they still must be approved by the university’s board of supervisors.
“I firmly believe that bringing back Chris and Lana, who are products of this system, will accomplish our objectives of competing for championships,” Lotief said in a news release.
Bowers also played under Lotief. She was a three-time All-Sun Belt Conference selection as a catcher from 2007-10. Bowers started 237 games in her career, hitting 27 home runs and making just 12 errors. She was an assistant with the Cajuns during the 2013 and ’14 seasons.
“Lana is a winner, as she’s been to the Women’s College World Series as both a player (in 2008) and coach (in 2014),” Lotief said in the release. “She cares deeply for the people around her. She will be a tireless worker and will bring energy, enthusiasm and intensity every day. She has a ‘whatever-needs-to-be-done’ mentality.”
Malveaux comes to the Cajuns from Bradley, where he spent the past four seasons as an assistant. Before that, he was a volunteer assistant on the Cajuns’ 2009 team before being promoted to a full-time assistant for 2010 and ’11.
Before joining the Cajuns in 2009, Malveaux spent seven years with McNeese State, serving as head coach from 2005-08.
“Our relationship started in the early 2000s when we both were new to college softball,” Lotief said. “We’ve been on this journey together ever since. We have always collaborated and shared ideas. Chris has always been a sounding board for me, has always been willing to think outside the box, and is someone I have always been able to rely on.”
Women’s basketball adds Katz
The Cajuns women’s basketball team also rounded out its coaching staff by announcing the addition of Katherine Katz as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator.
Katz, a New Orleans native, most recently coached at Appalachian State during the 2013-14 season. Before that, she spent five seasons at Samford, a span that included two NCAA tournament appearances. Katz also was a graduate assistant at LSU.
Katz’s hiring is subject to approval by the board of supervisors.
“Coach Katz brings a world of experience and knowledge of basketball from her previous coaching positions,” coach Garry Brodhead said in a news release. “As a native of New Orleans, Kat has great contacts throughout the state of Louisiana and the region.”