Acclaimed UCLA softball coach Enquist to retire

Updated: September 26, 2006, 10:46 PM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Sue Enquist, who won 11 national softball championships as a UCLA player or coach, is retiring as the Bruins' coach.

Enquist will end her coaching duties on Jan. 1 and become a director in the UCLA athletics external relations office, the school announced Tuesday.

Assistant coach Kelly Inouye-Perez will replace Enquist, becoming only the third to hold that post in the 32 seasons of UCLA softball.

Enquist was the program's first All-American and the most outstanding player in the 1978 AIAW Championships, when the Bruins won their first national softball title. She joined the coaching staff after graduating in 1980.

She shared the head coaching duties with Sharron Backus from 1989 through 1996, becoming the sole head coach in 1997. Since then, her teams made seven NCAA championship game appearances and won three titles, most recently in 2004.

Her career coaching record is 887-175-1.

Inouye-Perez was a catcher on UCLA's NCAA championship teams in 1989, 1990 and 1992. She has been a Bruins assistant for the past 13 years.

Her staff for next season will include three-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time NCAA champion Lisa Fernandez; eighth-year assistant Gina Vecchione; and Olympic gold medalist Natasha Watley, who will be a volunteer assistant.

Backus served as the program's first head coach, beginning in 1975.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press