July 15, 2009
LOGAN, Utah - Carissa Kalaba has been named Utah State head softball coach, it was announced Wednesday by Athletics Director Scott Barnes. Kalaba becomes the eighth head coach in 33 years of Aggie softball.
"Carissa has a great pedigree having been an elite player at the Pac-10 level along with her success as a head coach," Barnes said. "It is evident that Carissa has great energy and passion for helping young women reach their potential in softball, academics and in life. She will be a great addition to our team."
Kalaba (Cal-uh-ba) comes to Utah State after five seasons at Biola University in La Mirada, Calif. Biola is part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). While at Biola, Kalaba led the Eagles to five-straight playoff appearances, the longest streak in the program's 17-year history. Her teams also finished no lower than fifth in the tough Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC), posting an overall mark of 59-61. During her tenure at Biola, she compiled an overall record of 143-93 (.606 winning percentage), averaging just under 29 wins per year.
"I am honored with the opportunity Utah State University has given me to be the head coach of the Aggie softball program," Kalaba said. "The goal is to build the program back to a level of excellence that will be a force in the Western Athletic Conference. I envision moving forward swiftly, as the existing and incoming student-athletes have tremendous potential. I am anxious to get started and am overjoyed to be a part of the `Aggie' family."
Under Kalaba, the Eagles ended the 2009 season with a record of 19-21, advancing to the GSAC Tournament as the fifth seed, falling to Azusa Pacific. Biola was third in the conference with a 1.84 ERA and fourth in batting with a .273 team average.
In her first four seasons at Biola, the Eagles averaged 31 wins per year. In 2005, she led the Eagles to a 34-16 mark and the team's first NAIA Region II appearance in three seasons. In 2006, she led Biola to a 32-14 record, which was third-best season in the program's history.
In addition to coaching at Biola, Kalaba has coached the Jets Gold U18 team from 2002-2009. She was also the head coach at Arcadia High School in Arcadia, Calif., from 2000-04.
Kalaba started her collegiate career at Hofstra University, playing there from 1996-97. After transferring to powerhouse UCLA, she was a catcher and utility player from 1997-99, helping the Bruins to the Women's College World Series title in 1999. A 2000 graduate of UCLA, she earned her bachelor's degree in history.
The former Carissa Millsap is married to Joe Kalaba. She is expected to announce her coaching staff in the coming weeks.
Kalaba's Coaching File
2005-09 - Biola University
2002-09 - Jets Gold 18U Team
2000-04- Arcadia High School
1996-97 - Hofstra
1998-99 - UCLA
-- After transferring from Hofstra University, Kalaba played two seasons at UCLA where the Bruins won the WCWS title in 1999.
-- During her tenure at Biola, she compiled an overall record of 143-93 (.606 winning percentage), averaging just under 29 wins per year.
-- Her husband, Joe, was an assistant coach for her at Biola.
-- She had three players earn all-GSAC honors this season, as well as two GSAC scholar-athletes.
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