Editor’s note: Kim Aggabao took over as SDSU’s new softball coach in late July. We recently caught up with her and asked her about her new team, moving to South Dakota and setting goals for 2012.
Q. Do you have a specific area of expertise or focus?
A. In college I was an infielder, so when working with the team I’ll be working with infielders, defensive alignments, and the hitting coach as well. This summer I was able to hire Carla Shepherd, who will be our pitching coach. We just started on the field Sept. 5 and it was good to see the girls out there and see what they can do.
Q. This is your first head coaching job, what’s the transition been like from assistant coach to head coach?
A. It’s been good. When I came in this summer, obviously there was a lot to do. But my head coach in San Diego really prepared me well for being a head coach. She gave me a lot of reign to run with things in the program and the transition has gone smoothly.
Q. What do you bring to the table as a head coach?
A. I’m hoping to bring a new energy to South Dakota State softball. My expectations are high for this team. I expect our girls to work hard and have that mindset that nobody is going to outwork us on the field. We’re going to be prepared to compete every day and give 100% effort. Hopefully, we’ll be in that conference tournament at the end of the year.
Q. What are the challenges of having outdoor facilities in a climate like South Dakota’s?
A. We’ll be indoors for a good part of our spring season. Obviously, we’re at a disadvantage but we’ll make use of our indoor facilities and really get to hone our fundamental skills and get a good breakdown of hitting, defense and small group workouts. With our first game at North Texas, that’ll probably be the first time we’re out on the dirt in the spring.
A. We have a good mix of strong upperclassmen. Strong returners who will be the foundation of our team and help the newcomers out. We have eight new girls, which is a lot for softball. We’ll hopefully have a good mix of girls with speed and girls who can hit the long ball as well. I think we’ll have that good balance and strong pitching.