Gelbard Names Carla Shepherd UMBC Softball Pitching Coach

Gelbard Names Carla Shepherd UMBC Softball Pitching Coach

BALTIMORE -- Former ACC saves leader Carla Shepherd has joined the UMBC Softball coaching staff, head coach Heather Gelbard announced on Monday.

"I have known Carla for a long time, she is a great fit for our staff, and I'm excited she is joining us," said Gelbard. "Carla is very passionate about the game of softball and the young people that she works with. The numbers don't lie, she has gotten impressive results at each of her previous coaching stops. I'm excited for her to start working with our pitchers and sharing her extensive knowledge of pitching."

"I am extremely excited to be joining the UMBC family and I can't wait to get started working with the team and the pitching staff." said Shepherd. "I first want to thank Coach Gelbard for giving me this incredible opportunity. She has such a strong passion for the game and brings out the best in everyone. Being a part of her coaching staff is such a great honor. I am so grateful to her and the entire UMBC athletics department."

Shepherd joins the Retrievers after spending last season working with the pitching staff at Shepherd (WV) University where she helped guide the team to an impressive 14-game improvement after only winning 20 games in the year prior to her arrival. In her lone season with Rams, Shepherd guided the pitchers to a 2.44 ERA, substantially lower than the 4.53 from the previous campaign. The pitching staff allowed only six home runs all season after permitting 39 in 2015. They tossed eight shutouts, double from the previous year, and struck out 220 batters (up from 160 in 2015). She coached Shepherd's Female Athlete of the Year and First Team All-MEC Conference honoree Kaitlin Munda, who went 21-5 in 2016. The Rams also won the North Division title for the Mountain East Conference.

Prior to coaching Shepherd last season, the Miami, Fla. native has been an assistant coach at George Mason, South Dakota State, Occidental College, and Louisiana State University Eunice.

A 2007 graduate of the University of the South at Sewanee, Shepherd earned a degree in U.S. History with a concentration in education, and completed a master's degree in sports management from Southeastern Louisiana University in 2010.

Shepherd started her collegiate playing career at College of Charleston where she posted a 7-2 mark with a 2.36 ERA in 2003. She later moved on to North Carolina State where she led the ACC in saves and garnered Georgia Tech Tournament MVP accolades in 2004. She finished her career at Sewanee, where she had a 1.66 ERA and set a school single season record with 160 strikeouts as a senior.