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UVa notebook: Cavaliers hire Roberts to be softball pitching coach
UVA NOTEBOOK

UVa notebook: Cavaliers hire Roberts to be softball pitching coach

The Virginia softball program has hired Mike Roberts to be its associate head coach and pitching coach, the school announced on Tuesday.

Roberts heads to Charlottesville after spending the past three seasons as the associate head coach and pitching and infield coach at Louisiana. During Roberts’ time on the staff, the Ragin’ Cajuns won back-to-back Sun Belt championships and reached two NCAA regional finals.

“We are beyond excited that Mike is making his way to Charlottesville,” Virginia head coach Joanna Hardin said in a release announcing Roberts’ hire. “Based on his resume and proven success, it comes as no surprise that he was heavily sought after.”

Roberts’ success speaks for itself. He helped lead both Oregon (2014) and Washington (2017) to the semifinals at the Women’s College World Series and has coached multiple All-American pitchers, including including Summer Ellyson (Louisiana), Taran Alvelo (Washington) and Cheridan Hawkins (Oregon).

Roberts also has served as an assistant coach with both the U.S. Women’s National Team and the New Zealand Women’s National Team.

“Pitching is the name of the game and Mike will come in and make an immediate impact,” Hardin said. “After speaking with multiple colleagues, Mike’s character, integrity, professionalism and passion were common themes in addition to his pitching expertise. Not only will he bring a wealth of game knowledge to our program, but his values align with Virginia Softball; this was really important to me throughout the interview process. He rounds out our coaching staff perfectly.”

Roberts will be tasked with improving a Virginia pitching staff that compiled a team ERA of 4.05 last season and did not have a pitcher with a winning record during the Cavaliers’ 15-33 campaign.

“I am honored to join coach Joanna Hardin and the entire UVa softball family,” Roberts said in a release. “I’m excited to get to the University of Virginia and get to work.”

Honor roll

Virginia placed 493 student-athletes on the 2020-21 ACC honor roll, the conference announced on Tuesday.

The ACC honor roll includes student-athletes who participated in a varsity-level sport and had a grade point average of 3.0 or better for the full academic year. In total, the ACC had a record 5,791 student-athletes make the honor roll for the 2020-21 academic year.

“We are very proud of our student-athletes who are being recognized for their academic achievements,” Virginia athletics director Carla Williams said in a statement. “The year was full of unprecedented challenges and our student-athletes did a wonderful job competing in their respective sports and excelling in their academic pursuits.”

A total of 46 Virginia student-athletes were part of the ACC honor roll for the fourth time, while six received the honor for the fifth time. That group includes Charlie Campbell (women’s lacrosse), Louie Hayes (wrestling), Dillon Reinkensmeyer (football), Lizzy Sieracki (women’s soccer), Carl Söderlund (men’s tennis) and Anna Sumpter (women’s soccer).

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