Q&A With the Bears About Their Coaches
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  01/31/2012

Jan. 31, 2012

BERKELEY -Using success on the field as a marker, it's no secret that the Cal softball coaching staff continues to excel year in and year out. This past June, after garnering the attention of the nation with a trip to the Women's College World Series, the California coaching staff earned recognition from its peers as the Pacific Region coaching staff of the year. But another yard stick for measuring coaches is how they interact with their student-athletes, and head coach Diane Ninemire, assistant coaches John Reeves and Tammy Lohmann along with volunteer assistant coach Angie Jacobs are some of the best in that category. CalBears.com polled the current Golden Bears to find out why playing for the Cal coaching staff is so rewarding and what some of their favorite coaches' sayings are.

Valerie Arioto -
Coach John has a new corny joke every day, so just hearing what he has come up with is always a good time! He looks forward to hearing my great fake laugh! His jokes can break up tension from a stressful practice!

Cheyenne Cordes -
I enjoy playing for these coaches because they have a lot of knowledge to share with me, and they are a lot of fun.

Ashley Decker -
The best part about playing for the Cal coaching staff is that they are always finding ways to make the team better and to be successful. Plus, they are all easy to get along with, and they all have a sense of humor.

Arianna Erceg -
My favorite thing that one of the coaches has said would probably have to be Coach John's jokes that he tells me in the bullpen.

Danielle Henderson -
I like playing for this coaching staff because they care about every player and they push the team to perform better every day. They push us to be better, but they also help us to keep loving the game.

Jolene Henderson -
Coach John always has these jokes that make me laugh or a turkey for me to look at on the hill. He is an amazing guy and really always takes the time to talk to me about life and makes me work harder on the field and off. The entire Cal coaching staff has definitely given me a lot of laughs, and I am thankful for coaches that want to win but also know how to tell good/bad jokes!

LaRisa Jones -
Coach Ninemire has so many classic sayings. One of my favorites is when we're the runner at third and she tells us to be a "Mickey Mouse. Not a Minnie."

Breana Kostreba -
My favorite quote is "Clean up your room; recruits are coming," said by Coach Ninemire. Playing for the Cal coaching staff is great because they have so much experience and knowledge to offer.

Mary Lee -
Our coaches always emphasize attention to detail, which is a reminder that all the little things count and the effort we put in during the off-season will add up and pay off. The Cal coaching staff is very supportive and enthusiastic, and it is an honor to play for them. I always look forward to softball.

Nikki Owens -
My favorite Coach John saying is "Well, the nice thing about [whoever's catching] is that they always give the ball back to you." He says that whenever he notices me getting frustrated over throwing a bad pitch or missing my location in the bullpen. It helps me relax and not take myself so seriously. I love the coaching staff because each of them brings something unique to the table and they are very experienced and wise.

Jamia Reid -
My favorite part about playing for the Cal coaching staff is that all of them are all so passionate for the game and they care about their players. They all have a different aspect of the game, which is great. There is a lot of diversity among the three of them.

Alex Robben -
When Coach Tammy says "Sissy lalas," when we aren't playing at to our potential. The coaching staff tells it how it is and pushes us to become better.

Taylor Vincent -
I love Coach John's jokes. He only has about five of them, but he tells at least one each practice.

Britt Vonk -
I love how Coach Ninemire always calls me "Dutch Crunch." It's been great playing for this coaching staff. They have taught me a lot of great things since last year and this year! I can't wait for more!

Jordan Wallace -
The best part about playing for this coaching staff is never knowing what you are going to get. Always expect the unexpected!

Jace Williams -
Everything Coach Ninemire says is funny. She's old school and that's why she's so awesome. My favorite saying of hers has to be the time she yelled words of encouragement from home plate to center field where Frani was working on her throws to home plate. She yelled, "Come on, Frani, put it in the OVEN." I instantly fell on the dirt laughing. Coach was dead serious and had no idea why we were laughing so hard. Apparently, she did not know that none of us had ever heard that saying before. It still makes me giggle thinking about it!

Lindsey Ziegenhirt -
The whole coaching staff is fun to be around because there are so many different personalities that all complement each other.

During the 30 days leading up to the first game of California softball's 2012 campaign on Feb. 10, CalBears.com will be posting a multitude of releases and features. Below are all the features and releases. Check back Wednesday to find out if any of the Golden Bears are members of the top-50 watch list. To see all 30-for-30 releases and features in one place, please click here.