Army head softball coach Michelle DePolo announced the addition of another bright, young talented coach to her staff with her recent hiring of Benet Higgs as an assistant coach in July 2011. Higgs spent last year at South Dakota State University as an assistant coach instructing infield and outfield defense, base running, along with being heavily involved in recruiting.
"We are very excited about the arrival of Benet Higgs," said DePolo upon Higgs' hire. "She comes to West Point with a very diverse softball background, both as a player and coach, enabling her to be very versatile within the program. She is an ardent and diligent student of the game, and should have an immediate impact on the Army softball program."
Prior to her stint at South Dakota State, Higgs spent a year as a student assistant coach at Stephen F. Austin State University. She assisted with outfield and hitting instruction as the program captured its first regular-season Southland Conference title since joining the NCAA Division I ranks in 1988.
Along with her on-field coaching duties, Higgs will be working with outfielders and catchers, hitting and base running, and will also be involved in Army's recruiting efforts.
The 2010 graduate of Stephen F. Austin University closed out a stellar career with the Ladyjacks. Appearing in 181 games with 155 starts, Higgs batted .272 over her four-year career (2006-09) with 70 runs scored and 30 RBI. She stroked 25 doubles, eight triples and two home runs, posting a .396 slugging percentage along with 41 stolen bases.
A left-handed slapper, Higgs' speed enabled her not only to reach base, but also to draw extra base hits and stolen bases. She earned All-Southland Conference honorable mention honors her sophomore year as the Ladyjacks' center fielder and leadoff batter. Higgs registered a team-high 27 runs, was third with 43 base hits and struck out a team-low 16 times in 175 at bats hitting .246. She led her team in stolen bases (19), while defensively recording 106 putouts and seven assists, compiling a .974 fielding percentage as a centerfielder.
In spite of suffering a knee injury her junior year, Higgs split time at shortstop and center field while batting .317 and posting career bests in slugging percentage, doubles, triples and RBI in helping lead the Ladyjacks to the program's first-ever NCAA Division I Tournament appearance in 2008. Though injuries limited her playing time her senior season to just 91 at bats over 36 games, Higgs ranked among her team leaders batting .286 with a career high 12 RBI, along with seven doubles.
Higgs, who has ties in Texas and the West Coast, has worked and administered a variety of softball camps and clinics across the country.
The native of Antioch, Calif., who earned a bachelor's degree in business economics and operations management and is working towards her master's degree in economics, also enjoyed a stellar prep career as a member of the CA Sorcerers softball program and Deer Valley High School where she earned honors as a four-year starter on the diamond and in the classroom. Higgs' younger brother, Travis, a recent graduate at the University of San Francisco, plays for the Seattle Mariners farm system in Arizona.