Leslie Messina enters the third softball season for Kilgore College after nine years at Texarkana College. In Coach Messina’s eight years as head coach and one year as assistant coach in Texarkana, the Bulldogs won five conference championships, two regional championships, and the team’s first two appearances at the NJCAA National Tournament.
During her career at TC, Coach Messina has coached 10 All-Americans, 14 NFCA All-Midwest Region honorees, four Region XIV Players of the Year and 30 All-Region selections. The 2007 season proved to be the most successful in Bulldog Softball history which include a repeat as Region XIV East Conference Champions, Region XIV Champions and a top-10 finish at the NJCAA National Tournament. Coach Messina was also selected the Region XIV Coach of the Year and the National Fastpitch Coaches Assosciation NJCAA Midwest Region Coaching Staff of the Year. In May 2012, Texarkana College eliminated the athletics program due to financial problems after the softball team won Region XIV East Conference title and was name the Region XIV Coaching Staff of the Year.
Coach Messina was a catcher and designated hitter for the University of Evansville (Indiana) Purple Aces. While in Evansville, she worked for two years as a hitting and catching instructor for Diamond Sports Academy. After graduating cum laude in 1999 with majors in exercise science and sports medicine, she earned her master’s degree in kinesiology with an emphasis in coaching from Georgia Southern University. While she was at GSU, she served on the coaching staffs of the university’s Division I softball team and nationally ranked Division II Armstrong Atlantic State University. She designed Armstrong Atlantic’s weight training program and coached catchers and outfielders. During her tenure at Armstrong, the Pirates had the highest fielding percentage in the nation and finished the year at No. 21 in the Division II polls.
Coach Messina brings other distinctive credentials to her position with the Rangers. She has earned the National Fastpitch Coaches Association designation of One-Star Master Coach. Since 1999, she has been certified as a strength and conditioning specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Kristen Breaux enters her second season as assistant coach for the Rangers. She grew up in Port Arthur and graduated from Hamshire-Fannett High School in 2005. After high school, she played softball on scholarship for Temple College from 2005-07 and Lon Morris from 2007-08. After college, she was an assistant coach at Lon Morris from 2008-11 and was Lon Morris' head coach from 2011-12.
In 2010, she graduated from UT Tyler with a Bachelor's of Science in Kinesiology. From 2012-13, she was an assistant coach for Brownsboro ISD where she coached volleyball, basketball and softball. In 2012, she earned a Master's Degree in Sports Management from Southwestern Okahoma State University.