A new addition to the Park Blocks

New assistant softball coach Kellyn Tate brings enthusiasm and immeasurable experience with her to Portland State University.

New assistant softball coach Kellyn Tate brings enthusiasm and immeasurable experience with her to Portland State University.

She spent the past three seasons and the University of Miami, Ohio, as the lead assistant softball coach.

Tate specializes in hitting as well as the outfield. She will be responsible for the same duties here at Portland State, as well as recruiting duties.

Tate graduated from Michigan in 1998 with a B.A. in kinesiology and sports management. She also received her master’s from Texas Tech University in higher education in 2003.

Tate went professional for two seasons in 1998 and 1999, playing for the Orlando Wahoos and the Akron Racers, respectively. She played in the Women’s Pro Softball League, which is now called National Pro Fastpitch. Tate also played for the Sacramento Sunbirds in 2004.

The Vanguard sat down and asked Tate a few questions.

Daily Vanguard: Why did you come to Portland State?
Kellyn Tate:
The No. 1 reason was because [head coach] Tobin [Echo-Hawk] and I were teammates in the WPSL, and we established in immediate trust and bond amongst each other. The other reason is because I wanted get to the West Coast. This is a good place to call home. I’m not going anywhere.

DV: What has been your best moment on the field?
As a player, it would have to be making the NCAA College World Series all four years. As a coach, it would have to be my last season at Miami [Ohio] as we took the program to its second NCAA regional appearance since 1985.

DV: What is your greatest strength?
I have a great enthusiasm for the game, as well as in life. I try to stay positive and a lot of this game, as well as all sports, is based on failure. I am a coach that reinforces positive energy.

DV: What is your favorite place to eat around campus?
I have not explored that much yet, but Mio Sushi is my favorite place so far. Coach Tobin showed me this place, and I was so excited to eat fresh sushi. We don’t get anything fresh being from the Midwest.

DV: What is your favorite thing to do around Portland?
I haven’t been able to do much since I just arrived, but I’ve taken my dog—a chocolate lab—to the dog park, which is what I’ve done the most. I don’t know yet, I still have a lot of exploring to do. Ikea trips are something new to me, and I live right next to one.

DV: What is your most embarrassing moment while competing?
I don’t get embarrassed easily. However, I showed up to work here one day wearing Adidas pants. [That is a big no-no, as PSU is sponsored by Nike.]

DV: What is the first item that you would buy if you won the lottery?
I would buy a ticket for my entire family so they can come visit me here in Portland.

DV: Do you have a hidden talent?
I can play the guitar, but I would like to become better at it.

DV: If you could attend one sporting event or concert anywhere, what would it be?
I want to go to the Red Rock’s Amphitheater in Colorado, which is surrounded by rocks. Seeing a St. Louis Cardinal game is a good one too.

DV: Do you read the Vanguard? If so, how often?
My first day on campus, I made it a point to pick one up, and I plan on reading it every week.

Tate is very excited for the opportunity she has been given, and plans on staying at Portland State for a long time, making Portland her permanent home.

The former leftfielder said, “It has taken me a while to let go of the player in me, but coaching has now become my main priority.”

Sports have been in Tate’s blood, as she was three-sport athlete in high school and her dad was a coach as well.

“If I didn’t become a coach, I was going to go into marketing sports as a profession,” Tate said.

Tate will be looking to continue the recent success of the women’s softball team this year, and her experience and enthusiasm look to be a great fit here in the South Park Blocks.