Sharon Boeve De Kleine Named Calvin Softball Coach
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
GRAND RAPIDS – Sharon Boeve De Kleine has been named head softball coach at Calvin College. The move brings De Kleine back to her alma mater where the 1985 graduate was a standout student-athlete in both softball, as a pitcher and a shortstop, and basketball, where she played point guard.
A native of Holland, Mich., De Kleine was a three-sport athlete at Holland Christian High School, participating in volleyball, basketball and softball. At Calvin she earned All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association honors in softball and basketball, including league MVP awards in softball in 1983 and 1984, and in basketball in 1983.
Also in 1983 she became the first NCAA III softball All-American in Calvin history. And she was part of three Calvin softball teams that advanced to the NCAA III Tournament with Calvin’s 1984 team advancing all the way to the NCAA World Series.
As a senior she was honored with Calvin’s Kay Tiemersma Award – given to the senior female student-athlete who most exemplifies athletic and academic excellent along with Christian leadership.
De Kleine graduated in 1985 with a major in physical education and a minor in English. She later earned her master’s degree in 1992 in secondary education at Grand Valley State University.
After graduating from Calvin, De Kleine accepted a teaching position at Hudsonville Unity Christian High School where she remained for the next 23 years. While at Unity, she coached girls tennis, volleyball and softball. She was the varsity softball coach at Unity Christian from 1986-1995, leading the Crusaders to a Class B state title in 1992 along with a state runner-up finish in 1990 and a berth in the 1993 state quarterfinals. Despite choosing to step away from her position as a head coach in 1995, DeKleine continued to stay involved in the game over the 14 years on a volunteer basis.
This past fall, De Kleine joined the Calvin health, physical education, recreation, dance and sport (HPERDS) department as a part-time instructor – a position she will continue to hold along with her softball duties.
“I am excited about the opportunity to coach at a place where I grew up in many ways and is very special to me,” said De Kleine of her alma mater. “I know it will be a big challenge but I am looking forward to the opportunity.”
Calvin’s Director of Women’s Athletics, Dr. Nancy Meyer, believes that De Kleine is up to the challenge. “I am very pleased that Sharon has accepted the head coaching position for our softball program,” said Meyer. “I am confident that she is ready to be a head coach at the collegiate level. I am also confident that she will bring stability and maturity to the softball program.”
De Kleine is not unfamiliar with the recent MIAA softball ranks as she served as the pitching coach for the Hope College softball team this spring. De Kleine served as pitching coach under her former Calvin head softball coach Karla Wolters who now heads up the Hope softball program.
“I learned many things from Karla while I was a player for her and I also learned many things from her as a member of her coaching staff this spring,” said De Kleine. “One thing in particular that I learned this year was that the level of play in our conference right now is very strong. In order to win, a team needs to compete at a high level.”
This spring, the MIAA sent three teams to the NCAA III Tournament in softball, marking the first time it had done so since the 1995 season.