Mary-Ellen Hall | Head Coach/Senior Woman Administrator
Mary-Ellen Hall is in her 26th season as head coach of the HBU softball team, also serving as the department's Senior Woman Administrator. Hall signed a three-year contract extension through the 2018-19 academic year on Jan. 4, 2016. She ranks as HBU's all-time winningest coach in any sport with a record of 756-469.
In 2016, the Huskies went 15-29 with a 7-19 mark in Southland Conference play. Sophomore Libby Brown was named Second Team All-Southland Conference while freshman Demi Janak earned Honorable Mention honors. During the 2015 season, the Huskies went 13-32, 5-20 in the SLC. Senior first baseman/catcher Melissa Herman and freshman outfielder Nicole Shedd earned all-conference recognition following the competition of the regular season. Herman picked up second team honors, while Shedd was named honorable mention.
HBU made the SLC Tournament for the first time in 2014, as the team went 22-28 overall and 10-6 in league play. In that tournament appearance, the Huskies won their first postseason game as a member of the conference, defeating Stephen F. Austin, 8-7. HBU had four players named All-SLC, with sophomore Kirsten Schwirtlich being tabbed NFCA All-Region.
In 2013, the Huskies went 15-27 and 6-20 in its first season as a member of the Southland. With a 13-3 win over Central Arkansas on March 19, 2013, Hall recorded her 700th win. HBU was well-recognized with post-season honors from the conference, as Lauren Schwirtlich and Victoria Granchelli were named first team All-SLC, Kirsten Schwirtlich was named to the second team and Herman was named to the third team. The Huskies also earned two of the major awards, as Lauren Schwirtlich was named Newcomer of the Year and Kirsten Schwirtlich earned Freshman of the Year honors.
In 2012, HBU went 16-33 overall and 2-4 in the conference. The Huskies beat Nebraska Omaha in the playoffs, defeating Dana Elsasser, who led the nation in ERA, but lost twice to Utah Valley in the double-elimination tournament. Herman earned first team all-conference honors, while Daniella Rodarte, Holly Webb and Keely Shuler were second team selections.
In 2011, Hall led the Huskies to one of the best seasons since their return to NCAA Division I, as HBU went 36-23 and won the Great West Conference championship. She was named the GWC Coach of the Year, while senior shortstop Mollye Mlcak and senior pitcher Jammie Weidert earned GWC Player and Pitcher of the Year honors, respectively. The Huskies also posted great marks in the classroom, as Mlcak was named a CoSIDA Academic All-America and the team earned the fourth-best GPA in all of NCAA Division I, at 3.551.
In 2010, the Huskies went 16-30 in their first season in the Great West Conference, finishing with a 2-4 conference mark. Mlcak and Sara Corcoran were named first team All-GWC, while four others were named to the second team.
In 2009, HBU went 18-23 which included a third-place finish at the Independent Tournament in Greeley, Colorado, and saw Casie Campanello earn All-Independent honors.
In 2008, she led the Huskies to an impressive 28-13 record in their return to NCAA Division I.
Since 2009, Hall has served as the SWA for the Huskies. Her duties include coordinating and/or providing support of all woman’s sports teams at HBU, attend home and away games and conference championships as appropriate to represent the department, participate in the hiring and evaluation of sports coaches, disseminate pertinent information to coaches, provide insight and information regarding women’s issues and programming at all levels and represent HBU at Southland Conference and NCAA meetings and conventions.
Prior to taking over the reigns as head coach, Hall served as an assistant coach for three seasons. In her first year as an assistant, which also was the first year of HBU softball, the Huskies competed as a Division I member.
During her tenure as head coach, Hall has led the Huskies to nine NAIA national championship tournament appearances and national rankings, including the team’s highest final ranking of second in 2005. Hall holds a career record of 732-444 at HBU and was honored by the university at the National Fastpitch Coaches Association for her 500th career win during the 2006 season. She has had athletes selected All-America 31 times in her 22-year career and Academic All-America 44 times, in addition to her teams being awarded for excellence in the classroom by the NFCA.
Academics is a high priority of Hall’s as has been evidenced by 31 softball players receiving a spot on the Red River Athletic Conference All-Academic team for achieving a 3.0 or better grade point average. She had nine athletes named Academic All-America by the NFCA and has above a 90 percent graduation rate in her 24 years at the helm.
Hall led HBU to nine straight Red River Athletic Conference titles with the Huskies having their best record in school history in 2005 with 51 wins and setting a new low for losses with five. She was named RRAC Coach of the Year in each year the Huskies competed in the conference and after the 1999 and 2005 seasons, NFCA honored her, along with assistant coach Roger Willhite, as NAIA Southwest Region Coaching Staff of the Year.
Hall, who received her bachelor’s degree from HBU in 1988 and her master’s in sport sciences from the United States Sports Academy in 1991.
Hall attended Marian Christian High School where she was a four-time all-district selection in softball and voted as the team’s Most Valuable Player twice. She played on summer softball teams that attended the state tournament five times and finished fifth in the nation in 1980. In addition to softball, Hall played basketball and volleyball at MCHS.
After high school, Hall attended HBU on a volleyball scholarship where she was a two-year letterman for the Huskies. Hall also served as assistant volleyball coach for her high school alma mater while attending HBU.
Hall has enjoyed much success at HBU, building the Huskies into a perennial NAIA national power. She served as chairman of the Red River Athletic Conference and Region VI softball coaches and as a national rater for the NAIA. She also is a past president of the NAIA Softball Coaches Association.