Head Softball Coach
Sue Kunkle enters her eighth season at the helm of the University of Southern Indiana softball program after leading the Screaming Eagles to their fourth straight 30-win season and 10th in the last 12 years.
In 2008, Kunkle led USI to a 31-23 overall record, 14-10 GLVC, and had the Eagles on the brink of an NCAA II Tournament berth. Despite missing the NCAA post-season, Kunkle became USI's all-time winningest softball coach and enters 2009 with a 215-145-1 (.597) overall record.
Two years ago, USI overcame injuries to post a 31-24-1 overall record, 13-10-1 GLVC, finishing fourth in the GLVC. Like most of Kunkle's squads, the 2007 version had a strong finish as it went 9-4-1 in the final 14 games, just missing a berth in the NCAA II Great Lakes Region Tournament.
In 2006, Kunkle guided her Eagles into the NCAA II Great Lakes Region Tournament for the first time since 1998. Her squad went 39-18, 17-5 GLVC, finishing third in the NCAA II Great Lakes Region Tournament. Kunkle was named the GLVC Coach of the Year after USI's second-place finish in the GLVC during the regular season.
Under Kunkle, the Eagles have consistently been at the top of the GLVC--one of the top conferences in Division II softball--during the last seven years. USI has posted one second-place finish in the GLVC Tournament as well as two third-place finishes and two fourth-place finishes in the league's post-season tournament.
In addition, Kunkle has seen her student-athletes garner one All-America honor, 21 All-Region awards, and 31 All-GLVC accolades. USI also has gotten the job done in the classroom under Kunkle, with her players earning nine Academic All-District V awards and more than 50 Academic All-GLVC honors.
In 2005, Kunkle's squad overcame a rough start before winning 30 of its last 42 games to finish with a 30-20 record, including a 10-8 mark in GLVC play. In the process of their strong finish, the Eagles set a school record for consecutive victories, stringing together 18 consecutive wins on the heels of an 0-8 start.
Despite an up-and-down conference season, Kunkle's squad rebounded to win three straight elimination games in the GLVC Tournament before falling to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.
In 2004, Kunkle's Eagles battled some of the top teams in Division II and jumped out to an 8-0 start in conference play before finishing the campaign with a 26-24 overall record and an 11-7 mark in the GLVC.
Kunkle directed the Eagles to a 27-18 overall record and a 13-7 mark in the GLVC in 2003. That squad produced six All-GLVC and four All-Great Lakes Region performers.
During her first season, Kunkle led the Eagles to a second-place finish in the GLVC Tournament and to within an eyelash of a berth in the NCAA Division II Tournament. Kunkle also set the USI record for wins by a first-year coach with a 31-18 overall record, 10-7 in the GLVC.
She also has coached two USA Athletes International squads. Kunkle led her first squad to a first-place finish in Holland in the summer of 2005 and her second squad to a third-place finish in Australia in 2006.
Kunkle took over the USI softball program in 2001 after a tenure at the University of Akron. In addition to her coaching duties, Kunkle teaches in the USI Physical Education Department.
Kunkle helped develop some of Akron's best hurlers, including 1998 UA Female Athlete of the Year Shelby Howell (1995-1998).
She was responsible for recruiting and coordinating the team's travel arrangements
as well as organizing the Zips camps and clinics, the Dugout Club, and alumni relations.
Kunkle began her coaching career as a volunteer assistant at California University of Pennsylvania. She gained a year of coaching experience at Morehead State University before being named assistant coach at Bethel Park.
A four-year starter at California, Kunkle became the winningest pitcher in school history with a career record of 54-12 from 1990-94. The Vulcans earned PSAC West Championships in Kunkle’s last three seasons, and were the conference’s overall champs in 1991. An All-Region pitcher as a junior, she earned All-Conference and All-Regional Tournament honors as a senior, while leading her team to a regional championship and California's
first-ever appearance in the Division II College World Series.
Kunkle, who resides in Evansville with her daughter Morgan, earned a bachelor's degree in education from California in 1994. She received her master's degree in sports science and coaching at Akron in 2001.
KUNKLE at USI
|Year||Overall Record||GLVC Regular Season||GLVC Tournament Finish|
*NCAA II Tournament; ^GLVC Coach of the Year