Denver assistant Haave hired at San Francisco

Updated: April 29, 2006, 12:19 AM ET
Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO -- The University of San Francisco hired Denver assistant Tanya Haave as the school's new women's basketball coach Friday.

Haave, a three-year starter during her playing career at Tennessee from 1980-84, was an assistant coach at Denver last season following four years as an assistant at Colorado.

She becomes the seventh head coach at USF and replaces Mary Hile-Nepfel, who resigned last month after 19 seasons coaching her alma mater.

"I'm really excited to be a head coach, especially in a place like San Francisco," Haave said. "Meeting the players during the interview process, it was clear that the cupboard is not bare. There is a good core group. Knowing this is a program with some tradition, it's important to get back to competing for conference championships and advancing to the NCAA Tournament."

Hile-Nepfel is the winningest coach in the program's history, going 270-264 and reaching three straight NCAA Tournaments from 1995-97.

But the Dons have endured four straight losing seasons, including a 9-20 mark last season after an overtime loss to Santa Clara in the West Coast Conference tournament semifinals, and eight losing records in the last nine years.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press