In Dec. 11 IssueRussell County News
A new head softball coach, who is a former Morehead St. Lady Eagle and assistant coach at Ryle High School in Northern Kentucky, has been hired at Russell County High School, according to Athletic Director Rita Branscum.
Stephanie McGowan took over the reigns of the softball program in September after longtime coach Trent Tarter resigned the position over the summer.
McGowan's resume speaks for itself as she was a member of the Morehead St softball team from 1999 through 2002. She set the school's career stolen base mark in April 2002 against Eastern Kentucky University with 56.
The former Stephanie Swanger, McGowan is originally from Hebron, Ky. and a graduate of Conner High School. She met Tyler McGowan of Russell County while attending Morehead St. and the two were later married.
They now reside in Jamestown with their two daughters, Rylen, 3, and four-month-old Marlee. Tyler is now the city clerk in Jamestown.
McGowan said she never thought she would like coaching as much as she did playing but the three seasons she coached at Ryle were a blast, even saying she enjoyed coaching more than actually playing the game.
Now after starting a family in Russell County she was offered the head softball position, and accepted.
"It was a nice break but I just missed it so much," she said. "I'm very energetic and I'm always trying to figure something out."
She said she was looking forward to pushing her new team in hopes of reaching new heights for the program.
"When I'm in game mode it is all about the game and all about the girls," she said.
"I don't concentrate on anything else."
McGowan said she has had a couple of meetings with her players and was looking forward to developing relationships with them as they progress toward softball season.
"From the time they offered me the job until now I feel like I'm way behind," she said. "Time is flying."
Jamie Brumley will assist McGowan this season in the dugouts at Laker Field.
McGowan said growing up in Northern Kentucky it took some time to adjust to her new home, but that it was also growing on her.
"I love it here," she said. "I've met the nicest people here."
McGowan said she is impressed with the facilities at the Lady Laker softball complex and looks forward to working her players out in the facility as the season grows near.
"I'm really just looking forward to seeing what I'm going to start off with," she said.
The anticipation she said she is feeling will only grow stronger as she actually sees her Lady Lakers take the field in the spring.
"I can't wait to see what kind of team I'm going to have," she said. She said she was also impressed with the booster club and parent involvement in the program, saying that it a necessity to have a good program.
"When you get some place like this you've got people that don't have kids in softball but they'll still come to the games, I think that is really awesome," she said.