Sports

UH-Hilo Getting Closer to Hiring Baseball, Softball Coaches

August 1, 2014, 4:04 PM HST
* Updated August 1, 4:08 PM
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Application deadlines have closed for those interested in leading the University of Hawai`i at Hilo’s baseball and softball programs.

UH-Hilo is filling both head coaching vacancies, with hiring announcements potentially coming later this month. According to Interim Athletic Director Tim Moore, both searches are being done nearly simultaneously, with softball just about a week behind of baseball.

Interview have not yet been done, nearly three months after each sport concluded PacWest competition.

Kallen Miyataki, who told Big Island Now Friday that he re-applied for the position, was given the interim head coaching position following the retirement of long-time head coach Joey Estrella last season. The Vulcans finished the 2014 baseball season with a 14-33 record, hampered by a 5-24 road mark.

“We have a search committee and they are reviewing all of the application,” said Tim Moore, Interim Athletic Director at UH-Hilo. “We got over 60 applications for the position, many really good quality candidates, both locally and from places all across the United States.”

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A four-person selection committee is in charge of sifting through the qualifications, both required and desired, before recommending their selections to Moore. Each sport’s committee has a different group of people serving. Moore said he was not allowed to name the members of each committee.

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“We’re looking for someone that can not only coach a team but support student success in the classroom,” Moore said. “The reality of the matter is that rarely do we get an athlete that will go on and play pro ball so the school is the real reason that we should be supporting our athletes at UH-Hilo.”

Moore could not put down an exact timetable on when he could announce a hire. “With the process, it’s really hard to say. If one candidate is outstanding and it moves in that direction, it could happen relatively quickly, within a matter of perhaps 3-4 weeks. If the process is more slow and we have to have secondary interviews and possible fly candidates out…it may take as long as two months. But, we’re hopeful it’s going to be on the shorter end.”

The softball position has gained a lot of interest as well. The opening was created following the departure of Jaime Wallin, who resigned after four seasons to take a non-coaching job on the mainland. Wallin had a .608 winning percentage during her time in Hilo.

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“We also got a large pool of qualified candidates for the softball position,” Moore stated. I believe there is about 60 in that pool as well, and we also got really quality candidates that we are excited about, both locally and all across the United States.”

Both hires will be the first under Moore’s command of the athletic department. Moore, whose interim tag takes him through the end of 2014, took over on Jan. 1 following the departure of Dexter Irvin.

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