Ashley Chastain is embarking on her second season on the Spartan coaching staff in the 2018 season. Chastain will work with the Spartan pitchers, as well as be actively involved with recruiting, scouting, and all game preparation.
Chastain made an immediate positive impact in her first season in East Lansing, helping the Spartan pitching staff lower its team ERA by nearly a run and a half. She also helped bring along one freshman pitcher (Jordan Watson) and helped junior Bridgette Rainey post her best collegiate season, turning in the lowest ERA in her career while also posting a career best in innings pitched (144) and strikeouts (145).
Chastain is a finalist for the Rising Star Award from One Dream Zero Distraction, which will be awarded in December 2017.
In three seasons as the pitching coach at the College of Charleston under Linda Kalafatis, Chastain helped the Cougars to a record of 99-68, with a record of 35-23 in 2016. The 2016 team proved to be one of the finest in program history, with school records in fielding percentage (.974), and errors (42). Under Chastain's tutelage, the CofC pitching staff posted the eighth lowest opponent batting average in program history (.242), and the ninth fewest runs allowed with 191. Four CofC players picked up Second Team All-CAA honors under her tutelage, and three earned NFCA All-Region honors.
The College of Charleston won 24 games in 2015, and posted a record of 40-16 in 2014. Under the guidance of Chastain and the Cougar coaching staff, pitcher Hope Klicker earned All-CAA First team honors in 2014. The College's pitching staff has set number of top-10 pitching marks under Chastain, including the second and third most strikeouts per seven innings, with 5.90 in 2014, and 5.89 in 2015, and had the fourth fewest walks per seven innings (1.83) back in 2014.
Chastain served as a graduate assistant coach at South Carolina in 2011-12 after her three-year playing career as a Gamecock, where she was a teammate of Kaela Jackson.
She also brings international experience, both as a player and an instructor. She was an international member of the Wesseling Vermin's softball club of the German Softball Federation. She helped lead the team to numerous accolades and championships, most recently a national championship at the highest level in German softball in 2013. Chastain was named the Most Valuable Player of the championship series.
While abroad, she also served as a pitching coach for the German National Team as well as the coach of a junior team within the Wesseling Vermin's softball club. She developed pitching workouts and designed practices in order to prepare players to compete at their highest potential for the 2013 European Championship.
Chastain has also served as an instructor for Higher Ground Softball out of her native state of Georgia since 2008, teaching physical fundamentals and mental aspects to young students of the game.
A member of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), Chastain is the co-founder of Assistant Coach University, an organization based solely on assistant coach curriculum, which launched at the NFCA Convention in 2015. Chastain received her bachelor's degree in history with a minor in secondary education (2011) and her master's in secondary education (2012) from South Carolina.