Head Coach Krista Wood
Krista Wood was named the Jackrabbit softball head coach in August of 2014 after eight successful seasons at Wayne State College in Wayne, Nebraska. 2020 will mark her sixth season at South Dakota State.
Wood boasts a 409-289 overall record in 13 seasons of head coaching experience. She is 139-135 at South Dakota State after putting together a 270-154 mark at Wayne State.
The Jackrabbits won 37 games in each of the past two season (2018-19) and have won 20 or more games four times under Coach Wood. SDSU has reached the Summit League Championships all five seasons, including a championship-game run in 2018.
She has coached five NFCA All-Midwest Region selections (the first four in SDSU’s Division I era) and 18 All-Summit League selections in her time at SDSU, including the 2016 Summit League Freshman of the Year (Ali Herdliska) and 2018 Player of the Year (Brittney Morse). Herdliska is the first-ever Jackrabbit to earn All-Summit League honors four times in her career, and twice picked up an NFCA All-Midwest Region nod.
2018 was a banner year for Wood and the Jackrabbits, as the team finished with the program’s highest-ever winning percentage (.673), going 37-18 while reaching the Summit League championship game as the second-seed. Wood was named the Summit League’s Coach of the Year for her efforts.
State broke the 35-win mark for the second time in history and reached the postseason for the first time in its Division I era, earning an automatic bid to the 2018 National Invitational Softball Championship, where the team reached the championship round and forced a winner-take-all at the regional in Greeley, Colorado.
Wood and the Jackrabbits followed that with an equally-impressive 2019 season, as the Jackrabbits went 37-19 and again qualified for the National Invitational Softball Championship, traveling to the Ames, Iowa regional.
In her eight years at Wayne State, Wood turned the Wildcat program into a winner, inheriting a program that won 10 games in 2006 to a school record 43 wins in 2010, when Wayne State's earned its first-ever berth in the NCAA Division II Super Regional.
She brought WSC to three consecutive NCAA Division II Tournaments between 2009-11, including a 2010 NCAA Central Super Regional crown after winning the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference tournament that season. She added international coaching experience to her resume in the summer of 2009, coaching a United States team (sponsored by USA Athletes International) at the Oldenzaal Invitational in Holland.
A native of Missouri Valley, Iowa, Wood spent two seasons as an assistant coach at St. Cloud State University after a stellar career at the University of Nebraska-Omaha from 1999-2003. She helped the Mavericks to the NCAA Division II national championship in 2001 as a sophomore and finished her career as the all-time winningest pitcher in Maverick softball history with 106 wins and 530 career strikeouts.
In the 2001 national championship game, Wood tossed a two-hit shutout with five strikeouts in a 4-0 win over Lewis University. She also ranks second in career shutouts at UNO with 43, and earned numerous honors as a player at UNO, earning First Team All-NCC honors three times, while also collecting three All-NCC Academic Team awards. She earned NFCA All-Region First Team honors in 2002 and a Second Team All-Region selection in 2001. Wood also earned North Central Conference Freshman of the Year in 2000.
Wood also brings coaching experience at the high school level, serving as the pitching coach at Omaha Gross High School in the fall of 2003 and at state-qualifying Omaha Westside High School in 2004.
Wood earned a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education K-12 with an endorsement in coaching from the University of Nebraska-Omaha in 2004 and received a master's degree in sport management in 2006 from St. Cloud State University.
Krista and her husband Alex reside in Brookings with their son, Braxton.