Chipola softball coach leaving for D-1 job

Chipola College softball coach Belinda Hendrix has accepted the head coaching job at East Tennessee State University. Located in Johnson City, Tennessee, ETSU is a Division 1 university in the Southern Conference of the NCAA.

In 18 seasons at Chipola, Coach Hendrix’s teams have won the National Championship three times (2007, 2015, & 2019) and have finished runner-up twice (2016 and 2018). The Lady Indians made their sixth consecutive national tournament appearance this year and their ninth appearance overall at nationals.

Chipola Athletic Director Jeff Johnson said, “It’s a sad day for Chipola, but a great opportunity for Coach Hendrix. Our goal is to prepare student-athletes to go on to the next level; now, one of our coaches has proven that she is ready for the next level as a Division 1 coach.”

Known for her tireless coaching style, Hendrix also brought national recognition to the Chipola softball program hosting games with Division 1 universities such as FSU and even hosted the Chinese National Team. She also brought big name celebrities to the campus for camps and clinics, including superstar Jennie Finch and U.S. Olympic players Cat Osterman, Kelly Kretschman and Caitlin Lowe.

Chipola finished the 2021 season at 26-19 with its eleventh Panhandle Conference Championship and sixth State Championship. Five Chipola players were named to the State All-Tournament Team. Coach Hendrix was named FCSAA Coach of the Year. The Lady Indians also won a share of the 2021 Panhandle Conference title finishing with a 15-5 league mark, along with Pensacola.

Hendrix has coached numerous All-Americans, All-State and All-Conference players, including Amy Woodham, the 2019 NJCAA National Female Athlete of the Year.

Four Chipola softball players from this year’s team moved on to Division 1 colleges: Alexis Cosgrove, Middle Georgia State University; Kayla Hurley, Eckerd College; Marissa Baxter, Stetson University and Ashlyn Donner, Mercer University.

Coming off a 2019 national championship, Hendrix and her assistant Kelly Brookins, were named the 2019 NFCA NJCAA DI National Coaching Staff of the Year.

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