Newport, KY – Newport Central Catholic High School recently promoted long-time assistant, Chris Burkart to take over as head coach for its softball team. He has been an assistant coach for the past 11 years and President of the Northern Kentucky Softball Coaches Association since 2013.
Burkart, a 1984 graduate of Newport Central Catholic High School said, “I’m very thankful for the opportunity to be the new Head Coach of the Thoroughbred fast pitch team, and I’m looking forward to the challenge of leading these young ladies not only as their head coach, but preparing them for life after high school. I played baseball at NewCath for 3 exceptional coaches, Bill Vogt, Frank Pangallo, and John Lyons. My coaching style will be a reflection of the way that these coaches influenced me as a player. We will work hard and be proud of the name on the front of the jersey.”
“We will focus on the qualities that not only make a great player, but a productive individual. I firmly believe that the “life lessons” gained in sports, accountability, responsibility, honesty, respect, teamwork, and striving to improve, will benefit these young ladies as they progress through life. While wins and tournament titles are great, my hope is that when these young ladies graduate that they are prepared for the challenges of adulthood,” added Burkart.
Burkart credits much of his knowledge about fast pitch softball to former head coaches, Denny Barnes and Mike Mazzei, as well as some great assistant coaches, James Hubbard and Dan Hausfeld. He expressed his gratitude to coach Denny Barnes who allowed him the opportunity to get involved with the program in 2009. Burkart said, “Having played baseball and competitive men’s slow pitch, I thought I knew it all when it came to coaching fast pitch, but it was Coach Barnes who quickly let me know that while there are similarities, there is a big difference between baseball, slow pitch and fast pitch.”
Principal Ron Dawn commented, “I am very proud to announce Chris Burkart as our new softball coach. Chris has been involved with our softball program for many years and has been a great asset to our school. Chris is as hard working and dedicated to our school as anyone I know. I am also very confident that he will be an excellent role model for our players.”
Burkart has been coaching slow pitch and fast pitch softball since 2002. His three daughters played fast pitch at NewCath. He played for some of NKY’s best slow pitch teams in the 80’s and 90’s, is a 2012 member of the Softball City Hall of Fame, and was an All-Tournament selection as a member of the Schiffer Metal’s team that won the 1992 NSA Men’s Major Indoor Softball World Series.