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The longest tenured head coach at SIUE, Sandy Montgomery continues to write historic chapters nearly every season.
Montgomery became a member of the 1,000-win list, becoming the only person to have played for and won 1,000 games at her alma mater. The historic win came in 2017 in a neutral site game against Holy Cross.
The 2017 season also was a special one for Montgomery as the Cougars finished the season with a program record No. 41 in the RPI after a 41-win season. Senior pitcher Haley Chambers-Book became the first SIUE player to be drafted professionally as she was selected 14th overall by the Texas Charge.
The 2015 OVC Coach of the Year, Montgomery led the Cougars to their first-ever OVC regular season crown and has now powered the Cougars to the championship game of the OVC Tournament in each of the last four seasons.
As she begins her 30th season as the program’s head coach, Coach Montgomery's coaching record stands at 1,026-519-2. The Cougars have won 30 games in a season 21 times during Montgomery's tenure, and SIUE reached the NCAA Division I tournament the first time with a conference tournament title in 2014.
Montgomery has earned her success through hard work and determination. No matter the level, she always has found success. Montgomery oversaw the development of Chambers-Book, a two-time OVC Pitcher of the Year in 2015 and 2017 as well as the Most Valuable Player of the 2014 OVC Championship after winning consecutive games in the tournament over Tennessee Tech, Eastern Illinois, and Murray State.
Chambers-Book and second baseman Allison Smiley became the latest players to earn All-Mideast Region honors for the Cougars. Smiley was the team’s top hitter and committed just one error on defense.
An Associate Athletics Director for SIUE, Montgomery has made an impact not only on the softball program but also a lasting impact on the SIUE Department of Athletics. While staying engaged in the day-to-day workings of the department, Montgomery was instrumental in SIUE’s move to the Division I level as a member of the certification process, working as a member of the Self-Study Steering Committee and the Equity and Student Welfare Sub-Committee.
Her coaching résumé is among the nation's finest, including an NCAA Division II National Championship in 2007. It also features two consecutive appearances in the National Finals, in 2006 and 2007, and nine consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament from 2000 to 2008. In 2007, Montgomery's staff was named the National Staff of the Year. Two seasons later, Montgomery was named the 2009 NCAA Division I Independent Coach of the Year.
The Cougars have averaged 30 victories per season since joining the Division I ranks and have their eyes on elite status under Montgomery’s direction. Since joining the Ohio Valley Conference, Cougar Field has been one of the toughest places to play in the league with 65 home victories in the first six seasons of play. SIUE showed its strength early with an RPI as high as 56th during the 2013 season.
Montgomery and her 2009 team made a splash in the program’s first year at the NCAA Division I level. The Cougars finished 40-10 with a RPI (Ratings Percentage Index) of 49. Zembruski, outfielder Courtney Mall, and pitcher Kaitlin Colosimo were named first team NFCA/Louisville Slugger All-Mideast Region selections.
On the field, Montgomery has coached 11 All-Americans and 57 All-Region selections. She led the Cougars to the NCAA Division II National Tournament 11 times and won the GLVC Tournament five times, including three consecutive titles from 2006 to 2008. Montgomery earned the Great Lakes Valley Conference's Coach of the Year honor four times. The NFCA also named SIUE the Regional Coaching Staff of the Year three times. The 2009 season marked the 14th straight season Montgomery's teams won 30 or more games.
Montgomery finished out her collegiate softball career at SIUE where she became one of the most successful pitchers in the school's history. She hurled 42 shutouts and finished with a career record of 84-26.
Montgomery graduated from SIUE with a bachelor's degree in physical education in 1986. In 1988, she earned her master's degree in physical education from SIUE.
Montgomery's Accomplishments at SIUE
Montgomery's record at SIUE
*SIUE was issued two forfeits in each season.