Kristi Villar | Assistant Coach
Kristi Villar joined the Jackrabbit softball staff in July 2017 as assistant softball coach, bringing more than nine years of collegiate coaching experience to the program.
Villar spent the last seven years at Northern State (2010-17), where she won over 160 games while building a program that had previously never won more than 20 games before her arrival. The Oakdale, Minnesota native won 20 or more games four times, and helped the team to its first 30-win season while earning 2015 NSIC Coach of the Year honors.
While at Northern, she worked with the program's first All-Region pick, five All-Conference selections, five gold glove winners and an NSIC Newcomer of the Year.
Outside of the lines, Villar took an active role in improving the team's academic performances, raising the team grade point average by a full point (to a 3.8 in 2016-17) over her seven years while grooming 58 Academic All-League awardees. Her team's GPA has ranked in the top five of NCAA Division II the last four years as well.
Prior to NSU, she worked for two seasons (2007-09) as a graduate assistant coach at Southwest Minnesota State, where she helped the Mustangs to consecutive NSIC championships and worked with one All-American, three All-Region players and seven All-NSIC picks.
Villar taught and coached at Lennox High School during the 2009-10 academic year, assisting the girls' basketball and softball squads.
A standout shortstop at Augustana College, Villar played under NFCA Hall of Fame coach Sandy Jerstad for one season before continuing her stellar play under a new staff. She earned All-North Central Conference honors four times in her career and led the team in hitting as a junior and senior. She was the NCC Freshman of the Year in 2003 and was a two-time All-Region performer. In her final season, she led the team to the NCC Conference Championship and an NCAA Tournament berth.
Villar earned her bachelor of arts in mathematics from Augustana in 2006, and a master's degree in educational leadership from SMSU in 2010.