Camp Coaching Staff
2018 University of Texas Longhorns Softball
Head Coach Mike White
After building the University of Oregon’s softball program into a consistent national power from 2010-18, Mike White was named Head Softball Coach at The University of Texas on June 25, 2018, by Vice President and Athletics Director Chris Del Conte. White guided the Ducks to five Women’s College World Series appearances, five Pac-12 Conference titles and nine-straight NCAA Super Regional appearances during his time at Oregon.
“Mike is a highly-respected coach with a tremendous reputation in the softball community,” Del Conte said. “What he has accomplished in nine years at Oregon is truly special. In a short period of time, Mike took a program that had not had a great deal of success and built it into a consistent national power. He is a program builder, and Mike truly cares about developing his student-athletes – on the diamond, in the classroom and as people. I’m so excited about the future of Texas Softball with Mike leading our program.”
“Why not Texas?” White said. “I believe The University of Texas has every resource available to become a national power in softball. The recruiting base in Texas is tremendous, and the plans that Chris Del Conte has for the program and facility upgrades make Texas very appealing. I think it’s the right time in my career to make a move. I still have a lot of energy and time left to make an impact, and Texas has the backing and resources to do just that.”
“Connie Clark did an amazing job at Texas, especially with the pitchers that she had come through the program,” White continued. “From Christa Williams to Cat Osterman to Blaire Luna, she tutored a number of great pitchers. She also had a lot of great hitters over the years. I still remember going through Austin in 2012 and having a true battle to get to the Women’s College World Series. What I want to do now is take the solid foundation established by Coach Clark and build on it going forward.”
During his nine years at the helm of the UO program, White registered a 435-111-1 (.796) overall record while guiding Oregon to five Pac-12 Conference titles in the last six years, including four in a row from 2013-16, and to five 50-plus win seasons. He led the Ducks to five of the program’s six overall WCWS berths (2012, 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018) and to the school’s first ever NFCA No. 1 ranking in 2014 (also reached No. 1 in the polls in 2015 & 2018). Along the way, he tutored 22 NFCA All-Americans, 56 NFCA All-Region selections, 50 All-Pac-12 honorees, five Pac-12 Pitchers of the Year, two Pac-12 batting champions, three Pac-12 Freshmen of the Year and one Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year.
During the recently-completed 2018 campaign, Oregon posted a 53-10 overall record while winning the Pac-12 title, earning the No. 1 national seed for the NCAA Tournament and advancing to the WCWS. The Ducks finished the season third in NCAA Division I in winning percentage (.841), fifth in earned run average (1.38), seventh in team batting average (.322), ninth in home runs-per-game (1.24) and 10th in scoring (6.11).
In all, four players reaped 2018 NFCA All-American accolades as catcher Gwen Svekis, pitcher Megan Kleist, pitcher Miranda Elish and third baseman Jenna Lilley all were named to the prestigious squads. Elish (25-2 pitching record) and Kleist (21-7) both posted more than 20 wins and finished the campaign at 12th and 17th in the nation in ERA, respectively. Svekis hit a team-leading 17 home runs and rated in the national top 20 for RBIs (60), while Lilley batted .363 with a squad-best 14 doubles, five homers and 41 RBIs.
“I want to thank Chris Del Conte and Chris Plonsky for their hard work in getting this done,” White said. “I’m truly honored and flattered that they have the trust in me to run the Texas program.”
“Personally, I’m tremendously excited to be the head coach at The University of Texas,” White said. “My first goal will be to get the current players on board with our vision for Texas Softball. I also need to put together a great coaching staff of people who want to grind along with me to get this program to the top.”
A well-known quantity throughout the softball world as both a coach and former pitching standout for U.S. National Teams, White followed up a previous two-year stint as an Oregon assistant coach (2003-04) by taking over as the head coach of the Oregon program prior to the 2010 campaign.
A standout during his own fastpitch playing career, White was a top pitcher n U.S. National Teams before retiring in 2007. A native of New Zealand, he became an American citizen in 1994 and helped guide Team USA to a bronze medal at the 2000 World Championships, going 2-0 with a 0.89 ERA and 19 strikeouts. In 1999, he posted a 3-2 mark with a 0.68 ERA and 35 K’s in helping the United States to a Pan American Games silver medal. He also helped New Zealand to two gold medals, three silver medals and one bronze in four events. For his efforts, White was inducted into the International Softball Congress (ISC) Hall of Fame.
The Wellington, New Zealand, native earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in marketing and management from Mount Mercy College (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) in 1989.
Assistant Coach Chelsea Spencer
The is Chelsea Spencer’s first season at the University of Texas. An assistant for the Ducks over the past six seasons, since joining the Oregon program prior to the 2013 season, Spencer played a role in 312 total victories and five 50-win campaigns. She helped guide the UO program to five Pac-12 Conference regular-season titles, including four in a row from 2013-16, and four berths in the annual Women’s College World Series (2014, 2015, 2017, 2018). During her time at Oregon, the staff was also honored as the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division I Pacific Region Coaching Staff of the Year on five occasions (2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018).
During the 2018 season, Spencer helped the Ducks post a 53-10 overall record while winning the Pac-12 title, earning the No. 1 national seed for the NCAA Tournament and advancing to the WCWS. With her duties primarily including working with the infielders and defense, UO registered an impressive .973 fielding percentage, good enough for 20th in NCAA Division I and second all-time in a single campaign in Oregon softball history (top mark was .974 in 2007). In fact, six of the Ducks top seven single-season fielding percentage marks occurred during Spencer’s time with the program.
“I’m extremely honored to join the Longhorns family,” Spencer said. “Texas has a long-standing tradition of pride and excellence, and I’m ready to fulfill that standard. I’m excited to step foot on campus, get this started and go to battle with this team. I want to thank Coach White for giving me this opportunity to help Texas to new championships. We know how to win, and we will.”
During her six years as part of the Ducks program, Oregon received a total of 20 NFCA All-American accolades. Included among those UO honorees were numerous infield standouts including second baseman Kaylan Howard (2013), third baseman Courtney Ceo (2014), third baseman Jenna Lilley (2015, 2018) and shortstop Nikki Udria (2016, 2017). From a league standpoint, her infield group was also included 13 times as part of the annual All-Pac-12 Conference squads.
Spencer began her coaching career as the junior varsity head coach at Alameda (Calif.) High School (2006). She then served a 2008 stint as a graduate assistant coach at Holy Names University (Oakland, Calif.) while concurrently serving as the head coach at Chabot Community College (Hayward, Calif./2007-10) as permitted by NAIA rules. From there, Spencer joined Jacquie Joseph’s staff as an assistant coach at Michigan State from 2011-12.
During a standout professional playing career, Spencer was a four-time All-National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) selection while starring for six seasons with the New York Juggernauts (2005), Philadelphia Force (2006-08), Rockford Thunder (2009) and the Tennessee Diamonds (2010). The shortstop and utility player won the 2009 league crown with the Thunder and served for a year as a team captain with the Force in 2007.
Collegiately, Spencer started 277 consecutive games at shortstop (2002-05) while helping the University of California to a stretch of four-straight WCWS berths that included the 2002 NCAA National Championship and consecutive national runner-up finishes (2003, 2004). A 2004 NFCA All-American, All-Pacific Region and All-Pac-12 choice, she also helped power the Golden Bears to the 2005 Pac-12 Conference title.
Spencer graduated from the University of California in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in American studies.
Assistant Coach Kerry Shaw
Coach Shaw is entering his first season with the University of Texas.
A decorated fastpitch player, who also enjoyed a successful career in the minor leagues as part of the San Francisco Giants (MLB) organization, Shaw possesses more than 25 years of coaching experience at both the high school and collegiate levels.
He spent the last three seasons (2016-18) as head coach at the University of Mary (Division II) in Bismarck, N.D. With the Marauders, he was in charge of all recruiting and evaluation of prospective student-athletes, practice planning and implementation, scouting, video analysis and game planning, travel and budgeting, fundraising and student-athlete academic monitoring.
During the 2018 campaign, Shaw tutored a pair of All-Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) selections in outfielder Emma Noble and infielder Kylie Alto (.340 batting average, six HR’s, 23 RBIs). Noble was chosen as the NSIC Softball Newcomer of the Year after leading the University of Mary in slugging percentage (.709), on-base percentage (.429) and HR’s (10) while rating second on the squad in batting average (.359) and RBIs (28).
Prior to his time at the University of Mary, Shaw spent the 2015 campaign as a Division I assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Southeast Missouri State in Cape Girardeau, Mo.
“I am beyond thrilled to receive this opportunity to work alongside Coach White, Coach (Chelsea) Spencer and the rest of the great softball staff and administration at the University of Texas,” Shaw said. “The chance to work with such established winners only comes along once in a lifetime. I’m ready to hit the ground running.”
At the interscholastic level, Shaw served from 2010-14 as both the softball and baseball coach at Odessa (Mo.) High School, leading the baseball team to conference and district titles and the softball squad to a state playoff appearance. He also had a successful career as the head baseball coach for Grain Valley (Mo.) High School from 1994-2002, leading his team to three conference championships and two state playoff appearances.
Additionally, Shaw also coached an American Legion baseball team in Oak Grove, Mo., from 2009-2012, and was the assistant coach from 1992-2016 in the Ban Johnson Amateur Collegiate Baseball Summer League in Kansas City, Mo.
Before venturing into coaching, Shaw began his own standout playing career on the baseball team at William Jewell College (Liberty, Mo.) from 1984-86 before heading to the University of South Carolina-Aiken for the 1987 campaign. From there, he went on to play from 1988-91 as part of the San Francisco Giants organization (MLB) with minor league teams based in Salt Lake City (Utah), Salinas (Calif.) and San Jose (Calif.), hitting .265 over a 288-game career with 47 extra-base hits and 121 RBIs.
Following his time in the minor leagues, Shaw began a successful fastpitch career in St. Joseph, Mo. He played a part in winning five ASA Major National Championships (including one in 2002 for Players Casino alongside Texas head coach Mike White) and the 2002 ISC World Championship while earning seven ASA All-American and two ISC All-World selections. For his outstanding efforts, he was recently inducted into the Missouri ASA Softball Hall of Fame.
A two-time ASA Major Tournament Most Valuable Player in 2000 and 2001, Shaw was also a part of the U.S. Men’s National Fastpitch Team from 2001-03, winning a gold medal at the 2002 Pan Am Qualifier in Guatemala and a silver medal (as a teammate of Texas head coach Mike White) at the 2003 Pan Am Games in the Dominican Republic.
Shaw earned a bachelor’s degree in health & physical education from Missouri Western State College (St. Joseph, Mo.) in 1993.
Volunteer Coach Kailee Cuico
Kailee Cuico is entering his first season with the University of Texas.
A standout on the diamond for the Ducks from 2011-14, Cuico served as part of White’s coaching staff at UO as both a graduate manager (2015) and a volunteer assistant coach (2016-18). During her time as part of the staff, she assisted with both hitting and defense, helping the Ducks post the nation’s top batting average in 2016 (.353) and the second-best fielding percentage in school history (.973 – 2018). Cuico has helped instruct and mentor numerous All-Americans, a pair of Academic All-Americans and a Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete during her time as a volunteer coach.
“I am extremely honored and excited to become a part of the Longhorns athletic family,” Cuico said. “I want to thank Coach White for continuing to provide me with opportunities to help powerhouse programs, such as the University of Texas, hunt championships. I have previously been a part of a team that went from being projected to finish last in conference to being the No. 1 ranked team in the nation. I look forward to building on that level of prestige even more with Texas softball and all of our passionate fans on the Forty Acres.”
A two-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Pacific Region and three-time All-Pacific 12 Conference Honorable Mention selection, Cuico was the first Oregon player to reach the 40-HR plateau for a career and currently ranks second in the UO record books in both career HR’s (46) and RBIs (180) and third in walks (100). During her time in Eugene, she played in 231 games, helping the Ducks to 193 wins, two Women’s College World Series berths (2012, 2014) and two Pac-12 Conference regular season crowns (2013-14).
Following her collegiate career, Cuico played two seasons with National Pro Fastpitch. She was a part of the Akron Racers roster in 2014 before moving on to help the Chicago Bandits win the 2015 Cowles Cup title.
Internationally, Cuico is currently a member of the Philippines National Team. During 2017, she helped guide her squad to a second-place finish at the Asian Women’s Championship (highest finish in Philippines softball history), earning the Philippines berths in the upcoming 2018 Women’s Softball World Championship and the 2018 Asian Games.
Cuico graduated from Oregon in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in social sciences with a focus in crime law and societies.
**Other coaching staff members will include experienced high school and college coaches.