Two assistants join softball coaching staff

Updated: Aug. 29, 2018 at 5:18 p.m.

Softball’s coaching staff added two new hires for the 2019 season, according to a release Wednesday.

Kiana Quolas and Laina Holmgren will join the staff as assistant coaches for the upcoming season. Quolas – a former pitcher at Coastal Carolina – will work with the pitching staff, while Holmgren – a former infielder at Charleston Southern and Boise State – will specialize on the defensive side, according to the release.

The duo are the first two hires made by first-year head coach Shane Winkler, who was named to the position three weeks ago after former head coach James DeFeo’s contract was not renewed in June.

“When looking for assistant coaches, I wanted to find passionate individuals who aren’t only great coaches but are even better people,” Winkler said. “We knocked it out of the park by getting these two on board.”

Last season, Quolas served as an assistant coach for George Mason, which earned a No. 4 seed in the Atlantic 10 tournament. GW split its only series of the 2018 season against the Patriots.

Prior to her stint in Fairfax, Quolas was a graduate assistant coach for Youngstown State from 2015-17, where she worked with pitchers and catchers. As a player, during the four years prior, she was named All-Big South Pitcher of the Year twice and recorded 90 career wins for the Chanticleers.

Holmgren graduated from Charleston Southern in May with a bachelor’s degree in sociology. There, she played under Winkler for two years after transferring from Boise State.

Holmgren appeared in 39 of the team’s 56 games during her senior season. She finished the year with a .220 batting average, 11 hits and six runs batted in. Following her graduation, Holmgren joined the team as a volunteer assistant coach.

The Colonials tallied 33 wins – a program high – last season under DeFeo. They advanced to the postseason after finishing No. 6 in the Atlantic 10, but were eliminated after consecutive losses to Fordham and Dayton.

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