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Interim no more: Bishop named Lady Bulldog softball coach

BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Becky Bishop is the interim no longer as she had the tag removed from her title as head Lady Bulldog softball coach, Union Director of Athletics Tim Curry announced recently.

Bishop coached the entire 2013 season as the interim, guiding Union to a 15-30 overall record and 4-14 Appalachian Athletic Conference mark. The team finished strong, going 2-2 in the AAC Tournament to place fourth.

“Becky has done a tremendous job for us this year, especially given the circumstances she was placed in,” said Curry. “Placed in a tough situation, she handled herself well and the team responded well to her.”

With a full season under her belt, Bishop is looking forward to putting her mark on the program now that it is hers.

“It’s a responsibility I’m ready for,” she said. “With all the work we’ve put in this spring and the relationships built with the players, I feel I’m in a good position to move the program forward.”

Bishop later added, “I am looking forward to continue at Union. I really like the school and the people I work with. I truly believe this is a good opportunity to begin my coaching career.”

Bishop was pleased to see how strong the Lady Bulldogs finished the season, especially with two walk-off wins in the conference tournament.

“I think the girls are resilient and showed that with how we finished in the conference tournament,” Bishop said.

Union had five players named to the All-AAC Second Team, and all of them are scheduled to return for the 2014 season. The Lady Bulldogs made a big splash with the long ball in 2013 as they tied the program mark for home runs in a game by hitting four in a game twice and for home runs in a season with 27. Jamie Cyrus (Loganville, Ga.) set the single-game mark for homers with three against Bryan (Tenn.) and tied the single-season record with seven.

“We’re bringing back a lot of hitting talent,” said Bishop, “so moving forward will be easier than anticipated.”

As a team, Union batted. 289 and scored 208 runs. The Lady Bulldogs lined 61 doubles and five triples to go along with 27 home runs and 181 RBIs. In the circle, the Union pitching staff posted a 5.65 ERA and struck out 170 batters in 282 1/3 innings pitched.

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