MELANIE MEUCHEL | HEAD COACH
The 2018 season is Melanie Meuchel’s first year as the head softball coach at Montana. She was hired in October 2017 after serving the previous four years as the program’s first assistant coach.
She has 14 years of college coaching experience, 13 of which have been at the NCAA Division I level.
Meuchel, a 1997 graduate of Missoula’s Big Sky High, worked as Montana’s pitching coach as an assistant, duties she retains as the head coach.
In Montana’s championship season of 2017, when the Grizzlies won the Big Sky Conference tournament title and advanced to the NCAAs in just the program’s third year, Meuchel’s pitching staff led the league in ERA at 3.09, more than two runs per game better than the previous season.
Michaela Hood went 18-7 and had a 2.31 ERA to earn first-team All-Big Sky honors as a freshman. She ranked second in the Big Sky in both wins and ERA, and topped the league with 178 strikeouts.
In 2016, Sara Stephenson won 14 games, the third-highest total in the Big Sky, to earn second-team all-conference honors, and Maddy Stensby threw five-inning no-hitters against both Portland State and Great Falls as Montana made the postseason for the first time.
Meuchel (pronounced Michael) was an All-Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference pitcher at Mesa State College (now Colorado Mesa University) and helped lead the Mavericks to the 2000 NCAA Division II Women’s College World Series.
She began her coaching career as a student assistant at Mesa State in 2002. She earned her degree in 2002 in human performance and wellness.
After two years as an assistant coach at McNeese State (2003-04), Meuchel spent the 2005 season as a graduate assistant at Oklahoma. The Sooners won 50 games and advanced to the NCAA Super Regional round. It would be the first of five trips to the NCAA tournament for Meuchel.
Meuchel joined the staff at Nevada in 2006 and coached the Wolf Pack for seven years. She worked under Michelle Gardner from 2006-08, then remained on staff when Matt Meuchel, her brother, took over the program.
Meuchel worked as the Wolf Pack’s pitching coach and recruiting coordinator as Nevada went to three NCAA tournaments and twice won 40 games. Meuchel coached Katie Holverson to Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year honors in 2009.
Matt Meuchel is now an assistant coach at Arkansas.