The Illinois College Athletic Department announced the new head coach of their softball program today, and it’s a familiar face.
Leslie Messina will replace Meghan Roman at the helm starting this season. Messina comes to I.C. From Blackburn College, where she has been the head softball coach since 2021. She earned her 400th career softball coaching win last April. Ironically, Messina took over the Blackburn program from her former high school coach Kerry Crum.
Messina is a 1995 graduate of Springfield’s Southeast High School. Messina was a catcher and designated hitter for the Division I, University of Evansville Purple Aces. She has been a head coach at the collegiate level since 2004, with previous stints at Texarcana College, Kilgore College both in Texas before returning to Illinois and taking the Blackburn job.
Messina has recently been selected as an inductee into Kilgore College’s Athletics Hall of Fame, where she achieved 142 wins, 5 conference championships, two regional championships, and the team’s first 2 appearances at the NJCAA national tournament across 8 seasons.