BYU softball assistant coach Pete Meredith was recently inducted into the Amateur Softball Association/USA National Softball Hall of Fame Class of 2016.
“I am very humbled to be included in the ASA Hall of Fame,” Meredith said. “You never dream about being included in the hall of fame. I just love playing the game and the competition and competing with the very best.”
Meredith was a successful fast pitcher as a 12-time ASA All-American and four-time member of Team USA. He holds the record for most wins in ASA/USA Championship play, and he helped pitch the U.S. to a silver medal at the 1998 World Championship.
Meredith joined the BYU coaching staff in 2014 and is primarily responsible for coaching pitchers. He has been with senior McKenna Bull since her freshman year and has helped her break multiple BYU pitching records.
Meredith says he uses the experience he gained from more than 20 years of playing to help his current players learn how to overcome the obstacles they face.
“I can help them with my experience and kind of guide them through some of the hiccups maybe I had; and learning the zone, learning the umpire, learning the plays and being a pivotal part of the team,” Meredith said.
He said he also wants to help the team understand the importance of accountability when it comes to playing each position.
“You have to own it anytime you go in on the mound or play any position you have to own it; whether it’s good, bad or indifferent,” Meredith said, “and I think that’s a big part of the learning curve.”
Head coach Gordon Eakin praised his assistant coach and his ability to get through to the players.
“I think the main thing with him is that he not only could do it as a player, but he’s an excellent coach,” Eakin said, “He knows how to teach it, he knows how to communicate it.”
Eakin said he has seen the players learn and grow a little bit every day under Meredith’s care. Meredith has worked closely with the pitchers, and Bull had nothing but positive things to say about him.
The rise ball pitch was Meredith’s best pitch during his playing career. Bull said with Meredith’s help and after getting the spin right, she has turned the rise ball pitch into one of her most effective pitches as well.
“I’m grateful I’ve been able to work with him. He’s made me a better pitcher and I wouldn’t be where I am without him,” Bull said.
Bull has been a key player for the Cougars, and Meredith is coaching the newer pitchers in the same way Bull has been coached.
“He’s had a big impact,” Eakin said. “And it’s not just on our pitchers, it’s the whole game, because he understands the game so he’s able to impart that knowledge to the team in areas other than just pitching.”
The Cougars have won the six fall games they’ve played and will finish up the pre-season by playing UNLV in a double-header Saturday, Oct. 22, in Las Vegas. The official season will pick up in the middle of February, and Meredith says he has high hopes for the team.
“I think we’re pretty solid. I’d say in my short tenure here at BYU, this is by far the best team we’re going to put on the field,” Meredith said. “We have pitching depth we have speed, we have power, we have good skill positions. I feel that if we get a break here and there we could go a long way.”