Coaches

Leslie Messina
Position:
Head Coach
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Leslie Messina enters the sixth 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.

Trish Robinson
Position:
Assistant Coach
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Trish Robinson enters her second season as assistant softball coach at Kilgore College, hired in July of 2016.

In her first season as KC's assistant coach and pitching coach, KC's pitchers broke several school records including 258 strikeouts and 33 wins. Last season KC had a pitcher named first team all-conference, second team all-region and second team all-conference.

Before KC, she was assistant softball coach for the Trinity Valley Community College Cardinals (Athens, Texas).

As the pitching coach at TVCC, the Cardinals had the second-lowest ERA (2.97) in the Region XIV East Zone.

Robinson, a native of Sugar Land (Texas) is a 2005 graduate of Dulles High School and a 2007 graduate of The University of Texas at Dallas where she earned a degree in psychology.  She was also a two-year member for the UT-Dallas softball team.

After graduation from UT-Dallas, Robinson was a graduate assistant for the Comets (American Southwest Conference).

Prior to UT-Dallas, Robinson spent two years at Alvin Community College (Alvin, Texas) where she earned an associate’s degree and played softball for the Dolphins.

At ACC, she hit .361 with 21 RBI in 2007 and was named the team's Offensive Player of the Year.

Nicole Parnell
Position:
Assistant Coach
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Nicole Parnell joined the Kilgore College softball coaching staff in May of 2017.  She graduated from Trinity Valley Community College in 2015 with an Associate of Arts in General Studies and will graduate in 2018 with a bachelor's degree in Marketing from Texas Woman's University.  As a sophomore at TVCC she appeared in 55 games for the Lady Cardinals, compiled a .255 batting average with 20 runs scored and was named honorable mention all-conference.  She was also a starter at St. Edward's University and Texas Woman's University.   The team she played for at TWU qualified for the Super Regionals. She was also a four-year letterwinner for head coach Rebecca Sharkey at Cedar Creek High School where she was named first-team all-district her senior season, honorable mention all-district her junior season, all-Bastrop County her junior and senior seasons and had a career .400 batting average and a .987 fielding percentage during her high school career.

Bianca Van Vlerah
Position:
Assistant Coach