Softball New Head Coach Leads Team’s Transformation

1cBy Harrison Howard

New Interim Head-Softball Coach Amanda Montalto takes over team in hopes of heading to Nationals.

Montalto, formerly the assistant coach of the College of Southern Nevada’s softball program, was elevated to her new position because of her winning past. She was a former three-time first-team Mid-American Conference player while she played at Ball State University, according to records from the University. She spent three years assistant-coaching before this big break.

One thing she took away from the coaching staff at Ball State was how to motivate players to persevere. “They showed me how to keep the tempo up and stay engaged as a coach and how to never quit,” Montalto added. She brings that mentality to her players on CSN’s team.

Montalto’s revamped strategy for this season is to cultivate the new crop of freshman talent and position the Coyotes for a breakout year by focusing on the offense. Last year the effort was on bunting the faster players with intention to move runners around the bases while also getting the batters on first. Montalto wants the players to swing away, not just bunt.

“When you have speed, you don’t necessarily have to bunt them,” Montalto said. “We have a lot of great bats this year so we are really trying to swing for the fences and put up big numbers.”

Her fast runners are empowered to make decisions of when to steal second on their own. “I entrust them with the green light,” Montalto said.

Last season, CSN’s softball team had an overall record of 34-21 and a conference record of 23-17. The Coyotes are returning three sophomores this year including Scenic West Athletic Conference All-Region Outfielder Maggie Manwarren.


Tapuala batting practice

Manwarren, lead-off player and quickest runner, is learning a lot from Montalto’s batting strategy. She is grateful for her teammates and coaches this year and hopes the new synergy will pay off.


“They’re just so positive,” Manwarren said. “We have such a good relationship with them. The team bonds so well when we’re on the field together and I think obviously it starts from the top and works its way down and I think it’s because of the coaches.”

Tiana Tapuala, sophomore shortstop, admires her teammates’ abilities. “Everyone on this team can play. It really helps the team out.”

Sophomore Second Basemen Chelsea Perez appreciates the mentorship she gets from the coaches. She said they are focused and determined on the field but committed to the players as mentors off the field.

Montalto’s goals for the season are to win the SWAC tournament and move on to Nationals.

“The culture is already starting to change,” Montalto said. “CSN is going to be a program that people will look at years to come and say ‘wow they really turned that around’.”

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