November 7, 2017—Mount St. Mary's University softball coach Anna Nagro has announced the addition of 2017 Northeast Conference Player of the Year Rachel Heinze to her coaching staff as an assistant coach.
In addition to earning NEC Player of the Year honors, Heinze was named First Team All-NEC at the catcher position. The 2017 Mount St. Mary's graduate also garnered Third Team All-Region honors at catcher from the National Fastpitch Coaches Association and Second Team All-ECAC honors for the second consecutive season.
"Rachel Heinze is a prime example of what Mount Softball is all about and we are very lucky to add her to our staff," said Nagro. "Her journey as a student-athlete embodied the core values that we built this program on and our players are so excited to learn from one of the best. Rachel is an unbelievable hitter and her ability to pass the knowledge of hitting along to our players will be an advantage for them. Since she is so well respected by her peers I look forward to her helping our hitters gain confidence through her positive personality. The fact that she is one of the best players to have ever played here is just one piece to what Rachel means to this program. Personally, I have been so lucky to have so many good people surrounding me during my time here at The Mount, and adding Rachel to my support system is just another good person involved with Mount Softball."
Heinze had a monster senior season, hitting .407 with 15 doubles, 17 home runs, 49 RBI and 56 runs scored. She led the NEC in hitting (.407) while she was second in home runs (17) and third in RBI (49), runs scored (56) and doubles (15). She also led the NEC in both slugging percentage (.860) and on-base percentage (.492) while hitting .378 in 16 NEC games this year.
In addition to becoming the first Mountaineer to win NEC Player of the Year honors, Heinze is the first Mount player to earn First Team All-NEC honors in consecutive seasons. Last year, she was named First Team All-NEC at the utility position while also collecting the league's Most Improved Player award. She also joins Liz Christiansen as the only Mount players to earn First Team All-League honors two times in their career.
Heinze finished her career at the Mount as the all-time leader in home runs (43), runs scored (128), RBI (121) and total bases (327) while she is second in slugging percentage (.690) and doubles (35), third in hits (157), sixth in batting average (.331) and sixth in stolen bases (32). She set the Mount's single-season record for home runs with 19 last year, while her 56 runs scored and 129 total bases this season are new school records.