More State Softball Coaches of Year

In addition to overall State Coach of the Year Margaret Neill, we have additional state coaching honors for the 2015 season going to Brian Goulart from East Union of Manteca and David Kivett of Yucaipa.

For more on State Coach of the Year Margaret Neill, CLICK HERE.

Brian Goulart (East Union, Manteca)

Named as the Stockton Record’s All-Area Coach of the Year, he guided the Lancers to the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship in one of the more lopsided section championship final scores you will see with a 17-3 win against Pioneer of Woodland. East Union (30-3) also ended as the No. 1 team in the final Division III state rankings and was the top-ranked overall team from the entire section, even in front of Division I champion Sacramento Sheldon.

Photo: Paul Muyskens

Photo: Paul Muyskens

Previously an assistant at the school, he took over the head coaching spot in 2003 and captured a section championship in just his second season before having a lengthy wait to capture his second section title this season with a team that had just one senior.

The Stockton native played baseball at St. Mary’s and then went on to play at Delta College where he was a teammate of University of the Pacific head softball coach Brian Kolze. Standout Samantha Owen was named as the Stockton Record’s All-Area player of the year and last month gave a verbal to play right down the street from our Stockton office at Pacific.

Last 10 State Medium Schools Coaches of the Year: 2015 – Brian Goulart (Manteca East Union); 2014 – Jim Maier (Santa Fe Springs St. Paul); 2013 – Linda Merrida (Woodland Pioneer); 2012 – Randy Willis (Novato San Marin); 2011 – Jerry Dumatrait (Bakersfield Ridgeview); 2010 – Michael Roberts (San Diego University City); 2009 – Howard Miller (Torrance North); 2008 – Duane Zauner (Lake of the Pines Bear River); 2007 – John Rebstock (Brentwood Heritage); 2006 – Jon Ellinghouse (West Hills Chaminade).

David Kivett (Yucaipa)

If you followed high school softball either on a state or national level this season, you are well aware of how Kivett’s girls did this season as they finished as the top-ranked team in the state and nation after capturing their first-ever CIF Southern Section Division II championship with a win over previous No. 1 in the nation Mission Viejo.

NFHS Network adBorn and raised in Yucaipa, he went to school at the high school where he has become a teacher for the last 27 years while also being an assistant football coach at the school. He has also coached softball for 17 years and started coaching the Thunderbirds’ softball team 11 seasons ago and during his time in charge he has led them to a 198-88 record.

Two of the team’s three losses this season came against a Mission Viejo team that has two players up for state player of the year honors but the Thunderbirds defeated the Diablos in the game that mattered most as their state player of the year finalist Brooke Bolinger pitched a shutout to hand the Diablos their lone loss this season.

Already this postseason, Kivett has been named Coach of the Year by HS Gametime and the All-USA Softball Coach of the Year.

For most seasons, the large schools coach of the year also is the overall State Coach of the Year. This time, however, we had a chance to pick one of the six most successful coaches in state history (based on wins) and did it with small schools honoree Margaret Neill of Lancaster Paraclete.

The last large schools state coach of the year who was not the overall honoree was Ginger Larsin from La Serna of Whittier in 2008.

Last 10 State Small Schools Coaches of the Year: 2015 – Margaret Neill (Lancaster Paraclete); 2014 – Russell Emberson (Taft); 2013 – Melissa Bugarin-Espinoza (San Pedro Port of Los Angeles); 2012 – Jim Pingree (Monterey Santa Catalina); 2011 – Mike Pontius (Lodi Elliot Christian); 2010 – Raoul Singh (Sutter); 2009 – Alan Borges (Eureka St. Bernard’s); 2008 – Art Lilly (Riverside Christian); 2007 – Casey Cooper (Newman Orestimba); 2006 – Alex Blanco (Montebello Cantwell Sacred Heart).

Paul Muyskens is the Stockton office assistant editor for Cal-Hi Sports. Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of He can be reached at Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports

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