PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Nebraska Series Doubles As Penn State Softball Coach Amanda Lehotak’s Homecoming

Penn State softball’s fourth-year head coach Amanda Lehotak can finally cross a career milestone off her list: coaching in front of her family.

This weekend’s road series at Nebraska marks the first time she’ll be able to bring one of her teams to the Cornhusker State in 11 years as a head coach. It’s only an hour drive from her hometown of Omaha to Bowlin Stadium in Lincoln, meaning just about everyone she grew up with will be there for Penn State’s three-game series against the Huskers.

“My stepdad has Alzheimer’s, so it was always his dream for us to come back and play there,” Lehotak said. “Literally everybody in my life lives in Nebraska but me and two other cousins.”

Lehotak’s Nittany Lions have their road routine down pat, having already played 33 away games to just five at Beard Field due to weather-related cancellations earlier in the season. For any other Big Ten coach, this weekend would be just another business trip, but for Lehotak, it couldn’t be more special.

“[Coaches] miss everything. We miss weddings, birthdays, reunions, and parties, so to be able to share what I do with my family for a weekend, I can’t wait,” she said.

Photo By: Cori Bugenhagen | Onward State

This isn’t the first time Lehotak has made a long-awaited homecoming. A decorated softball player herself, Lehotak jumped on the opportunity to play college ball at Ole Miss, where she set the program’s single-season hits record as a sophomore in 2001. But it simply didn’t feel right in Oxford, so she transferred home to Nebraska-Omaha for her final two years of eligibility.

“I got the best of both worlds,” Lehotak said. “I got to play in the SEC, then I got to go back, grow up a little bit, and be with my family.”

She graduated from UNO with a bachelor’s degree in family science then immediately embarked on her coaching career. Lehotak started locally, serving as an assistant at Daniel J. Gross High School in Bellevue, Neb., before taking an interim position at College of Saint Mary back home in Omaha.

Lehotak made another stop at Missouri Western State then it was off to sunny Florida and Jacksonville University. After one last year as an assistant, Lehotak finally landed her big break, being promoted to head coach of the Dolphins – a position she held for five seasons. Next up was a two-year stop at Texas-San Antonio.

Lehotak took her biggest career leap in July 2013, when she was named Penn State’s seventh softball coach in program history.

This weekend is an exciting next step in Lehotak’s coaching career. In front of scores of family and friends, she’ll lead her Nittany Lions with a little extra Nebraskan spirit. Friday’s first pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. ET.

About the Author

Ethan Kasales

Ethan’s a senior journalism major who grew up in Lemont, a few minutes from campus. When he’s not covering Penn State sports, you can usually find him golfing or teaching snowboarding at Tussey Mountain. Feel free to email him at [email protected]

Comments

State College Links
More by Ethan

Penn State Women’s Lacrosse Loses To No. 1 Stony Brook 21-13

The Nittany Lions had five players finish with three points apiece in Tuesday’s road loss to the undefeated Seawolves.

Saquon Barkley Goes On Eventful Sneaker Shopping Spree

Three Takeaways From Penn State’s Blue-White Game

Athletics

Penn State Baseball Routes Lafayette 8-1 In Allentown

The Nittany Lions’ offense exploded for eight runs in a much needed victory over Lafayette.

Report: Penn State Investigating Swimming Coaches After Allegations Of Bullying

Penn State Women’s Lacrosse Loses To No. 1 Stony Brook 21-13

Tony Carr Signs With Octagon Basketball Agency

Penn State Baseball, Lion’s Pantry Join Forces To Help Fight Food Insecurity

Student Life

Country Rock Band Old Dominion To Visit BJC October 26

Death. Taxes. The Bryce Jordan Center booking country acts.

UPUA Finishes Spring Semester Strong

The Weird, Wacky, And Wonderful World Of Penn State Craigslist

Saquon Barkley Shows Some Skin On SI Cover

The NFL Draft begins Thursday, April 26, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Barkley is expected to be a top-five pick, and he and his most vehement supporters say there’s no reason he won’t go No. 1 overall.

Saquon Barkley’s College Career As Told By Five Games

Five games in particular give a clear glimpse of what Saquon Barkley meant to Penn State football.

To Our Favorite NFL Teams: Please Draft Saquon Barkley

Our staffers enjoyed rooting for Saquon Barkley so much that they can’t imagine not doing so in the NFL.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Please Argue Somewhere Else: James Turchick’s Senior Column

“In the four years since I arrived at 502 Packer Hall with my roommate Mason and no clue what we were doing, I’ve become comfortable with where I think Penn State is heading.”

Send this to a friend