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New Hartnell College Softball Coach carries on family legacy

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SALINAS, Calif. (KION) Hartnell College recruited Salinas native, Casey Watt as the new Head Softball Coach.

Her father, Andy Watt retired in 2018 after building the softball program and leading the team as head coach for nearly three decades.

“To have your own kids follow in your footsteps is really exciting, super exciting," Andy Watt said. "But, I think her footprint is going to be way bigger than mine. I think she'll have a lot more success and be a better softball coach than I ever was."

Casey Watt replaced former coach Erin Houston who joined the team after Andy Watt's retirement.

“I've been around the sport since I was three days old," she said. "I went to my first Hartnell softball game."

Casey played varsity all four years at Salinas High School before she went on to play at San Jose State for another five years. After college, Casey spent three years coaching at two different colleges, one of them being her college alma mater. Being able to coach where her passion for softball started was an offer she couldn’t resist, she said.

“I used to come out to this field every other day when I was in high school and hit buckets of balls down that line," said Casey Watt. "So it's really special to be able to come back here to where a lot of my own softball growth happened.”

Hartnell College Athletic Director, Dan Teresa said he and Andy joined Hartnell the same year. According to Teresa, Andy was able to build a successful program at Hartnell, leaving a legacy behind.

"She's the golden ticket, you don't find too many coaches like that," Teresa said. "We built the family atmosphere in the department and bringing Casey in just adds to that because she knows what it's all about with her dad being here.”

With the help of her assistants, her team has grown to have 13 players. Casey looks forward to building her own program but also implementing what she’s learned from her coaching mentors including her dad.

“I want to make the program better than it ever has been," she said. "Really build and grow the level of the game that these ladies already have.”

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Jonathan Sarabia

Jonathan is a multi-media journalist at KION News Channel 5/46.

Comments

7 Comments

  1. @KION
    A man was killed last week on Carmel Valley Road when a Salinas girl drove the wrong way on CVR, ran him off the road in his truck which rolled over and killed him. And as yet, KION here has not updated the story, including the name of the poor guy killed. WHY?? Because he was Hispanic? Old? A Carmel Valley resident instead of some stinking gangster (you always print THEIR names)? Well, his name was Bernabe Cardenas, 80 years old, a victim…who deserves the respect you have not shown to Mr. Cardenas nor everyone on this side of the hill who cares.

    1. @Jalbert, I don’t know squat but it could be that the next of kin were notified and they chose to keep his name out of the papers. It is possible that the surviving family has the right to privacy in tragic cases like this. But if you found out his name, then your point seems valid.

  2. @Frankie
    Yes. IMO, The Pine Cone is the only legitimate news source in the County. Unbiased and relevant. No spin. No political leaning. And I mean this, literally the only news outlet that has actual reporters who go out and dig into stories. No melodrama meant, but my inclination right now is to stop posting on KION as I am really disappointed and upset by this. This side of the hill is small, quiet, and an event like the accident is a big deal. And to get zero coverage, other than the useless blurb last Friday, is really offensive. Instead, we get cut and paste stories by people who can’t even spell or know the tense of verbs.

  3. @Frankie
    Posting on KION really IS a waste of time. Only 4 people post, 2 of which post 96% of the comments. I am still sore about the zero coverage of someone killed by an obviously reckless, stoned or distracted driver…and the lazy cut and paste journalism. I am sure KION is happy to see me leave. If you want to go to the range sometime, you can email me at KellyConnor23@Comcast.net Not my real name, just a throwaway temp email address for just this purpose. I was not going to post again, just leave, but wanted YOU to know I was alive and well and moving on. Be well !

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