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Courtesy: Brian Blalock/SHSU
Four coaching finalists announced
Courtesy: GoBearkats.com
Release: 06/19/2014
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Will Bolt, Matt Deggs, Jeremy Fikac and Scott Malone have been announced as finalists for the head baseball coaching position at Sam Houston State, Athletics Director Bobby Williams announced Thursday.

The four candidates will be on campus to interview Tuesday, June 24, and Wednesday, June 25.

“We want to thank all of the coaches that interviewed for our opening. All of the candidates were exceptional, making this a very difficult decision,” Williams said. “I’m looking forward to having the four coaches in to visit with them further. We expect to have a decision on a head coach by the end of next week.”

A former Nebraska standout, Will Bolt was named Nebraska’s associate head coach in 2011. He helped lead the Cornhuskers back to the NCAA Tournament in 2014 for the first time since 2008. A four-year starter and team captain on Nebraska’s 2001 and 2002 College World Series teams, Bolt spent four seasons as the head coach at Texarkana College (2007-2010) before returning to Nebraska. Bolt led the Bulldogs to back-to-back Region XIV championships (2009 and 2010) during a stretch of four straight Regional Tournament appearances and four 30-plus win seasons. The Conroe, Texas, native oversees NU’s infield unit and helps direct the Husker offense.

Matt Deggs serves as the Louisiana-Lafayette hitting coach and third base coach, while also overseeing team personnel and recruiting. The Cajuns were a game away from the College World Series in 2014. The 2014 Cajun squad posted the most wins in both Sun Belt and program history, finishing the season with 58 wins and a run to the NCAA super regionals. Deggs is credited with running an offense that has been one of the best in the nation over the last two seasons. Deggs previously coached at Texas A&M, Arkansas, Texarkana College and Northwestern State. He led Texarkana College to two Texas Eastern Athletic Conference runner-up finishes and a pair of TEAC Titles (2001-2002).

Jeremy Fikac has been an assistant at Texas State for eight seasons. In 2013 Fikac was promoted to recruiting coordinator and pitching coach. In his first five years, Fikac worked with the team’s hitters along with handling scheduling duties. Prior to joining Texas State Fikac spent seven years in the professional circuit as a pitcher  for the San Diego Padres, the Oakland A’s and the Montreal Expos. A former player at Texas State, Fikac is still listed in the Bobcat record books for career home runs and stolen bases. In addition, his 83 strikeouts on the mound in 1998 rank 14th all-time at Texas State for a single season.

Scott Malone has taken Texas A&M-Corpus Christi to new heights in his eight seasons leading the Islanders. He led his team to four consecutive appearances in the Southland Tournament, a first in program history, and is the only coach in school history to lead the team to postseason play. Malone spent three seasons as an assistant coach at UNLV. At UNLV he oversaw all aspects of the Rebels recruiting efforts and served as the team's hitting instructor on the field. In 2005, UNLV won the Mountain West Conference regular season and tournament titles, advancing to the NCAA Regional. He was an assistant at UTA during the 2003 and 2004 seasons after spending the two previous seasons at UTSA.

“I want to sincerely thank Associate AD for Student Services Chris Thompson and Assistant AD for Media Relations Jason Barfield for assisting in this process. I’d also like to thank Human resources and Associate AD for Finance Bobby Hilliard for helping to streamline the process. Our Office Supervisor Denise Holcomb was also key in scheduling and setting up itineraries,” Williams added.

The Bearkats are looking to fill the position left by David Pierce, who led the Bearkats to three straight NCAA Regional appearances for just the second time in school history. The 121 victories in the last three seasons represent the most in any three-year stretch at the Division I level in school history. The Kats have gone head-to-head with and beaten several major programs in the state, including Baylor, Dallas Baptist, Houston, Rice, Texas, Texas A&M, TCU and Texas Tech.

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