The University of North Carolina at Pembroke has announced the hiring of Steve Johnson as the next softball coach for the Lady Braves. Johnson will also teach in the Health and Physical Education department.
"I am thrilled for our student-athletes that we were able to attract a young, enthusiastic, and vibrant coach," said UNCP Director of Athletics Dan Kenney. "Steve has a proven track record on the scholastic and collegiate level, and his excellent communication skills and recruiting abilities fulfill the two major objectives of our search."
Johnson has served as an assistant coach/graduate assistant for South Dakota State University's softball program for the past two seasons helping with recruiting, scouting, and coaching for all position groups. While at SDSU, Johnson earned a Master of Science in Heath, Physical Education and Recreation with an emphasis in Athletic Administration.
Prior to joining the Jackrabbits coaching staff, Johnson was the Head Varsity Softball Coach at Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, compiling a 114-100-1 overall record in four seasons. In 1998, Johnson led his team to the Regional Finals, while in 1999 Kennedy High School won the Regional Finals and advanced to the State Tournament under Johnson's direction.
Johnson also gained experience during college as a student assistant coach at Wartburg College. For two seasons he developed and coordinated the off-season strength program. Johnson graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts.
"I am really excited about this opportunity. The University is providing a lot of resources for this program, and the players are hungry and want to work hard to win," said Steve Johnson. "We plan on raising the bar for the softball program. There is going to be a new level of excitement and energy on the field. The Peach Belt is one of the premier softball conferences in the country, and we look forward to competing for that championship."
Johnson, a native of West Des Moines, Iowa, is a member of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. He is married to the former Rebecca Waldow, who has a music therapy/music education degree and works as a music therapist in the Minneapolis area. The couple plans on relocating to Robeson County.