Iowa softball coaching staff adds another

The Hawkeye softball program is growing with the addition of experience at different levels.


David Harmantas/The Daily Iowan

University of Iowa softball player Allie Wood watches a pitch during a game against the University of Wisconsin on Saturday, Apr. 7, 2018. The Hawkeyes defeated the Badgers 3-0. (David Harmantas/The Daily Iowan)

Esteemed head coach, assistant coach, and athlete Trena Prater has been named an Iowa softball assistant coach.

Prater served under new head coach Renee Gillispie in 2018 at Central Florida as a hitting coach and will continue that emphasis with the Hawkeyes. Prater will also be in charge of the outfielders.

As well as having experience working with Gillispie, Prater was the head coach at Buffalo and Hampton for seven seasons, where she recorded a MAC East Division title and a MEAC Tournament title, according to an Athletics Department press release.

“We are thrilled that we are able to bring Trena from UCF and have her be our hitting coach this year,” Gillispie said in the release. “She has given us a lot of stability and knowledge, because she came from Buffalo as a head coach, so she is bringing a second head coach understanding.”

Prater also served as an assistant coach with three teams before her tenure as head coach.

Prior to her coaching career, Prater played college ball at LSU and earned numerous honors coming in the 2002 season. She also holds the school record and a top-20 NCAA record for triples with 27.

After college, she moved onto National Pro Fastpitch, playing with four teams in her six seasons.

Gillispie’s culture is built around building up players not only on the field but also in their daily lives. Prater is expected to bring a new level to that with both coaching and numerous levels of sports experience.

“I’m thankful that Coach Gillispie asked me to join her at Iowa,” Prater said in a statement. “I’m blessed to have the opportunity to coach in a Power Five school like Iowa that has an amazing history of winning in the postseason.”

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