University of South Carolina Beaufort director of athletics Quin Monahan announced Thursday that Ty Rietkovich will not return as head softball coach for the 2013-14 school year.
“We wish coach Rietkovich the best of luck in the future and thank him for the work he has done over the past two seasons,” Monahan said.
Rietkovich, an Effingham County resident, was the first coach of the USCB softball program. He also served as interim athletic director.
The Sand Sharks finished with a 43-6 record and claimed the Sun Conference regular-season and tournament titles before losing to eventual national runner-up Spring Hill (Ala.) in the championship game of the NAIA National Championship opening round. USCB was ranked 11th in the final national poll, released June 6.
The Sand Sharks reeled off a school-record 14-game win streak in April and finished 14-2 in Sun Conference play. They also won a pair of games against NCAA Division I opponents, Savannah State and Morgan State.
The Sand Sharks also piled up individual accolades. Junior shortstop CJ Browder was named a first-team NAIA All-American by the NAIA All-America committee and the National Fastpitch Coaches Association, and was named the Sun Conference Player of the Year. Sophomore Kristy Cook was an honorable mention NAIA All-America pick and the Sun Conference Pitcher of the Year.
Browder and Cook were joined on the All-Sun Conference squad by sophomore Maddie Byrd and junior Katie Rietkovich, a South Effingham High grad and Ty Rietkovich’s daughter.
The four players also earned NFCA All-Region honors with Rietkovich, Browder and Cook on the first team and Byrd on the second team.
Byrd led a slew of academic honors with a selection to the CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-American Third Team, and she was joined on the Academic All-District Team by Rietkovich, Cook and sophomore Taylor Triplett.
Byrd and Rietkovich also made the Sun Conference Academic All-Conference team, along with sophomore Chelsey Blasingame and senior Caitlin Vaughn.
A comprehensive search for a new softball coach will begin immediately.