Head Softball Coach Heather Tarr
Tarr news and features:
Heather Tarr enters her twelfth year at the helm of the Husky softball team in 2016. Tarr has compiled an overall record of 443-196-1 with her alma mater. In 2015, Washington made their 22nd consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament and 11th straight under the leadership of Tarr. Eight Huskies were named to the All-Pac-12 academic teams, eight also received All-Pac-12 honors and six were placed on the National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-Pacific Region team.
Tarr shaped an offense that posted one of the best power-hitting seasons in program history in 2015. The Huskies hit a program-record 86 home runs and posted a program-record .582 slugging percentage. Washington also broke records in runs scored (460), RBI (418), walks (269) and on-base percentage (.445).
In 2014, Tarr guided the Huskies to their ninth Super Regional berth in her tenure. The Huskies hosted the Regional tournament for the fifth consecutive year and for a sixth time in Tarr's 10 seasons. Tarr earned her 400th career win after defeating Northwestern, 9-0 in five innings to make their seventh consecutive Super Regional appearance.
Tarr guided the Huskies to the Women's College World Series for the fourth time in her nine seasons in 2013. Washington placed third in the WCWS and ended the season with an overall record of 45-17. The Huskies clinched their 20th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and 11th overall WCWS appearance under Tarr's leadership. Washington hosted the NCAA Regional and went 3-0 before advancing to the Super Regionals against Missouri, where they went 2-0. Junior Kaitlin Inglesby was named an All-American. Six Huskies were named to the All-Pac-12 team and five were named to the All-Pacific Region team.
In 2012, Tarr led the Huskies to a 39-19 record and the right to host the NCAA Regional. UW went 3-0 in that regional and advanced to face No. 1 and Pac-12 foe Cal in Berkeley. It was the 19th-straight NCAA Tournament appearance for the Huskies. Sophomore Kaitlin Inglesby was named an All-American. Kimi Pohlman and Niki Williams were drafted into the NPF.
The 2011 team made its 18th-straight NCAA Tournament appearance and earned the right to host NCAA Regionals once again. UW went 3-0 in that tournament, defeating BYU twice and Portland State. The Huskies advanced to the Super Regionals, falling to the higher seed Missouri in two games. UW finished the season with a 37-16 overall record and a 9-12 record in a tough Pac-10 Conference. UW was a 12 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Huskies were the last undefeated team in the country, going 20-0 to start the season. UW got some big wins on the year including its first win at UCLA since 2007. Jenn Salling and Niki Williams earned Second-Team All-America honors while six total Huskies were named to the All-Pacific Region First-Team and five to the All-Pac-10 team. UW ended the season ranked 12th in the NFCA poll and 15th in the ESPN.com/USA Today poll after reaching as high as No. 4/4 on the year.
In 2010 Tarr led the Huskies back to the Women's College World Series for the second-straight season. She was named the Pac-10 Coach of the Year after guiding UW to the conference championship. The Huskies were ranked No. 1 in the preseason polls and all throughout the season until they earned the No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. They posted a 50-9 overall record, 20-4 home record and 17-4 conference record. The season began with five-straight wins. They also posted an 18-game winning streak from Feb. 19-March 19.
In Pac-10 play, the Huskies dropped just four games but won every series and headed into the NCAA Regionals with a five-game winning streak. Hosting the NCAA Regional (making their 17-straight NCAA Tournament appearance) in Seattle, the Huskies went a perfect 3-0, defeating North Dakota State (3-0) and North Carolina twice (1-0 and 2-1 in eight innings). The Huskies also earned the right to host the Super Regionals as Oklahoma came into town. The Sooners dominated game one, 6-1 and made the Huskies chances of getting back to the WCWS look bleak. However, coach Tarr rallied her team to win the next two games in shutout fashion, 3-0 and 4-0. UW became the highest seed remaining in the NCAA Tournament to make the WCWS as both No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Michigan both lost in the Super Regionals. They entered the tournament with a target on their backs and just fell short of a repeat, falling in game one to Georgia, 6-3 and in game two to Arizona, 4-3. She guided Danielle (Lawrie) Locke to her second-straight Player of the Year honor. (Lawrie) Locke left UW as one of the greatest pitchers in NCAA history, ranking near the top of every pitching category.
"Having the opportunity to play for someone like Coach Tarr not only helped me as a softball player, but as an individual,” (Lawrie) Locke said. “She has a way of making you feel so incredibly comfortable, but at the same time she is able to get everything you have inside of yourself out on the ball field. I don't think any other coach out there would have been able to drive me like she did. It’s all about your approach to each player individually, and she did that on an everyday level."
A total of nine Huskies earned Pac-10 honors in 2010, and five were named First-Team All-Region, and three earned All-American honors.
After leading the program to its 16th-consecutive postseason berth in 2009, Tarr and her team gutted out the longest game in program history in the NCAA Regional final, defeating UMass 6-1 on the Minutewomen's home field in 15 innings. The Huskies then swept through the best-of-three Super Regionals over Georgia Tech in Atlanta before the three-week road trip continued in Oklahoma City. In their ninth Women's College World Series appearance and second in Tarr's five seasons, the Huskies won their first two games before falling to Georgia in the first semifinal game. But the Huskies showed their grit again, defeating Georgia that night to advance to the Championship Series, where they dominated the Gators to bring home the title in two games.
The Huskies finished the 2009 season atop both the NFCA and ESPN.com polls for the first time in program history. Their 51 wins equaled the fourth-most in program history and the most for a Tarr-led Husky team. Following the season, Tarr and her staff were not only named the Pacific Region Coaching Staff of the Year, but also the NFCA National Coaching Staff of the Year. Individual honors also came pouring in, as Danielle (Lawrie) Locke was named the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year and the Honda Award winner, the first Husky softball player to ever earn such honors. (Lawrie) Locke and senior Ashley Charters were named First Team All-Americans and were each named to National Teams following the season, with Charters being named to Team USA and (Lawrie) Locke re-joining Canada.
Tarr's team peaked at the right time in 2009, with their offensive prowess on display at the World Series in addition to (Lawrie) Locke’s outstanding pitching which led to her being named the Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player. Husky players set several College World Series records, with Niki Williams breaking records for most RBI in a game (7) and series (10) and Morgan Stuart breaking the record for most doubles in a series (4). Five Huskies were named to the All-Tournament team, including freshmen Kimi Pohlman and Niki Williams, sophomore Morgan Stuart, junior Danielle (Lawrie) Locke and senior Ashley Charters. The Huskies showed signs of what was to come early in the season when they jumped out to a school-record 18-0 start, including a Championship Series preview against Florida, which the Huskies also won, 1-0. UW swept through the first four tournaments unscathed to take over the No. 1 spot in the ESPN.com/USA Today polls, the first No. 1 ranking for a UW team since 2000.
The Huskies then traveled across the country to Alabama for the Easton SEC/Pac-10/Big 12 Challenge which featured another Women's College World Series preview, with the Huskies and Georgia splitting two games. UW and eventual WCWS participant Alabama also split two games, with the Tide handing UW its first loss of the season. After finishing the pre-season at 27-3, UW embarked on the Pac-10 campaign, finishing second in the conference with a 14-7 mark, their highest finish in the league since 2000. They also closed out the regular season with a 41-10 record, their most regular season victories since 2003. UW then went 10-2 over the next three weeks to end the program's 16-year championship drought.
The 2009 season was a stark contrast to the 2008 season when UW was without (Lawrie) Locke, Charters and All-Pac-10 performer Lauren Greer due to redshirt seasons. Tarr still managed to lead the team to its 15th-consecutive postseason appearance and a 30-25-1 season - their 15th consecutive 30+ win season - to advance to the NCAA Regionals before falling to host Houston. In 2007, Tarr led the Huskies back to the Women's College World Series for the first time since 2004. Washington finished tied for third in the Pac-10 and went on to win the Lincoln, Neb. Regional before sweeping Alabama in the Super Regionals in Seattle to advance to the WCWS for the eighth time in school history. The Huskies defeated DePaul, 3-1, to open the WCWS as sophomore All-American pitcher Danielle (Lawrie) Locke pitched the 16th no-hitter in WCWS history and the first since 2003. Washington followed that up by defeating Northwestern, 9-0, as (Lawrie) Locke threw a one-hitter. Washington then ran into eventual national champion Arizona and lost two games to the Wildcats to finish tied for third in the country.
The Huskies finished the season with a 42-19 record and had three players earn All-America honors. (Lawrie) Locke and senior first baseman Dena Tyson both were named to the Louisville Slugger/NFCA First Team, while junior shortstop Ashley Charters was a second team selection. The trio of players were also named to the WCWS All-Tournament team, marking the first UW players selected to the team since 2000, and earned All-Pacific Region honors. In addition, Charters, (Lawrie) Locke, Tyson and three other UW players earned All-Pac-10 honors. The Huskies tallied 14 wins over opponents ranked in the top-25, including a win on the road at No. 3 Arizona and a pair of wins over No. 2 Alabama in the Super Regionals. Washington also swept the season series with Oregon, which was ranked No. 10 during the two teams first matchup and No. 16 during the final two games, and picked up wins over No. 7 Arizona State, No. 8 Texas, No. 12 UCLA, No. 15/16 Stanford and No. 16 Oregon State. The Huskies also swept a pair of games from No. 6 LSU.
In 2006, Tarr and the Huskies swept through the Provo Regional as a No. 1 seed with tournament MVP Danielle (Lawrie) Locke not allowing a run in three starts. The Huskies advanced to the Austin Super Regional where they fell to Cat Osterman's Texas Longhorns to just miss out on the WCWS berth. Junior second baseman Dominique Lastrapes and sophomore utility Ashley Charters each earned third team All-America honors and five players received All-Pac-10 honors. Washington finished the season with a 35-25 overall record and a No. 15 national ranking. The Huskies tallied 11 wins over opponents ranked in the top-25, including victories over No. 1 UCLA, No. 5 Oregon State and No. 5 Stanford.
In Tarr's first season at the UW, she led the Huskies to the Super Regional where they fell one game short of advancing to the WCWS. The Huskies' season came to an end when they lost a three-game series to eventual national champion Michigan in Ann Arbor and finished the year with a No. 14 national ranking. Seven Huskies earned All-Pac-10 honors, including Kristen Rivera, who was named Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. Rivera also became the Huskies' first-ever four-time All-American, earning first team honors as a catcher.
Three Washington players earned All-Pacific Region honors and three were named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team for their successes in the classroom. Washington finished the season with a 35-22 record and finished sixth in the Pac-10 Conference with a 10-11 mark after four teams log-jammed in a tie for first place with 13-8 records. The Huskies tallied 13 wins over opponents ranked in the top-25, including victories over No. 1 Michigan, No. 3 California and No. 4 Stanford. Before taking over the Washington program, Tarr had a six-year stint at Pacific, starting as an assistant coach before being promoted to associate head coach in April of 2004. During her six seasons at Pacific, the Tigers posted a 232-124 (.652) overall record and 90-44 (.672) mark in the Big West Conference. In 2004 Tarr guided the Tigers to a top-20 national batting average.
In 2001, she and Pacific head coach Brian Kolze were named the 2001 NFCA West Region Coaching Staff of the Year after guiding the Tigers to within one win of the Women's College World Series and a No. 18 final national ranking. That team also finished the season with a .973 fielding percentage, ranking second-best in the country. Tarr joined Pacific prior to the 1999 season after an outstanding career as a Husky.
As a four-year letterwinner, Tarr helped lead the UW to a second place finish at the Women's College World Series in 1996 and a third place finish in 1997. She earned various honors while playing softball at Washington. A three-year member of the Pac-10 All-Academic team from 1994-97, she was named to the Pac-10 All-Conference team from 1995-97 and the NFCA All-West Region team in 1996 and 1997.
Tarr also worked at Washington as an undergraduate assistant coach during the 1998 season, helping the Huskies to a third-place finish at the 1998 Women's College World Series. In addition to her collegiate experience, Tarr brings experience from the professional level as she spent the summer of 1997 as a member of the Women's Professional Fastpitch Softball League's Tampa Bay Fire Stix. She was the league leader in fielding percentage for first basemen and also led the league in walks. Tarr earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geography from Washington in 1998. She completed her Masters Degree in Education at Pacific in the fall of 2003. Tarr is a native of Redmond, Wash., and is a graduate of Redmond High School.