ESCANABA, MI – Head Softball Coach Heidi Charon has announced the hiring of three assistant coaches that will round out the staff for the inaugural season. Lesley Delvaux, Brianna Grimm, and Ross Rahoi will help lead the Norse Softball team in 2018-2019.
Coach Charon will welcome the three assistant coaches and begin preparations for the first ever Norse Softball team, which will meet for the first time this fall. "I am so excited to work with these folks and amazed at how fortunate we are to have been able to put together such an experienced and diverse coaching staff," commented Charon.
Lesley Delvaux currently works as an Occupational Therapist at OSF St. Francis Hospital. She has served as a pitching coach for West Coast Fundamentals as well as working as a private pitching instructor. Lesley had a very successful playing career at Michigan State University, and is in MSU's top ten all-time list for career wins (42), innings pitched (569.2), complete games (46), shutouts (15), and strikeouts (318). Prior to her time at Michigan State she played for Escanaba High School from 2001-2004. She was named All-District in 2002, 2003, and 2004 and All-Region and All-State in 2003 and 2004. Delvaux also helped lead her team to a second place finish at in the state in 2003.
"You can't find a better pitching coach than Lesley," said Charon. "She'll be able to provide our incoming pitchers with the best support and guidance. Lesley and I have played softball together from minor league through college, and it is pretty special to be able to continue our softball careers together as college coaches."
"I'm looking forward to establishing a competitive program in the team's inaugural season, as well as coaching side-by-side with a former teammate," added Delvaux.
Brianna Grimm worked as the strength and conditioning coordinator for the Norse Women's Basketball Team last season and is a radiographer at OSF St. Francis, as well as a personal trainer and group fitness instructor for the YMCA. She also assisted the Gladstone JV team this past season. Prior to that she was an assistant coach at Bark River-Harris High School for two years. Grimm was a multi-sport athlete at Alpena Community College, competing in softball, basketball, and volleyball. Brianna played high school softball at Escanaba High School.
Grimm went on to talk about the position. "I am beyond excited for this opportunity to coach a great group of talented young ladies at this level in the sport that I have so much passion for."
"We are excited to have Bri continue as the strength and conditioning coach for our women athletes this year and are even more excited to also have her as a softball assistant coach," said Charon. "She was a multi-sport athlete at a community college, which helps her relate to players really well."
Ross Rahoi currently serves as a tutor instructor at Escanaba High School as he works towards completing his teaching certificate through Northern Michigan University. As an assistant coach with Escanaba High School for the last four years, he has been a part of the recent success for the Eskymos. During his time there they have been district champions four times, regional champions three times, and were the 2018 Division 2 State Champions. Ross has coached for three years with the Heartbreakers travel softball club, and five years with the Escanaba Junior Cubs. Rahoi has 12 years of experience as an AAU and JV basketball coach and is currently the JV coach at Bark River-Harris. Ross played high school baseball in Escanaba, and in 2006 was a part of the team that took second place in the state. He also played five seasons with the Escanaba Cubs.
"Ross brings a whole lot of coaching experience to the table," said Charon. "He was recommended by several of his past players, which says a lot. His knowledge of hitting will be especially valuable."
"I am honored to coach in the new softball program at Bay College," commented Rahoi. "For years the school has provided top-notch educational opportunities for students in the Delta County area and beyond, and the re-inception of the athletic program has only strengthened that ability."
Charon indicated that additional help will be available to the Norse. "The coaching staff won't end here. We have also had a ton of interest from several people in the local softball community who wish to be involved with the team on a volunteer basis. I have no doubt that with these folks we will be able to develop a highly competitive team with a positive, growth-focused culture."
The 2018-19 Bay Norse Softball team will begin practice this fall, with several scrimmages planned. The spring of 2019 will see Bay College compete as an NJCAA Division 2 team in Region XIII.