Shane Gunderson has been hired as the new Bemidji State University softball coach.
"Shane (a former BSU graduate assistant and All-America catcher at the University of Minnesota) has experience playing baseball at an extremely high level," said BSU Athletic Director Rick Goeb. "He not only played at the collegiate level, he also spent six years in the Twins farm system developing his skills. He has spent the last several years coaching, giving lessons and instructing at clinics so I am confident that he will step right in and transfer those skills to players in our softball program."
"I am really excited to be back on campus," Gunderson said. "I loved my two years here as a graduate assistant. I enjoy the people, I like the atmosphere and I think the athletic department is headed in the right direction."
Gunderson returns to Bemidji State where he served as a graduate assistant coach for the BSU baseball team from 2007-09.
As a player, Gunderson put together one of the finest careers of any catcher in University of Minnesota baseball history (1992-95). The Faribault, native hit 16 home runs, and six triples and accounted for 65 runs batted in during the 1995 season en route to American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) First-Team and Mizuno Third-Team All-America selections in 1995. Gunderson remains among the top 10 in three career offensive categories, including home runs (31), on-base percentage (.457) and slugging percentage (.632). In addition, the two-time All-Big Ten pick helped the Golden Gophers to the 1994 NCAA tournament.
In 1995, Gunderson cut his collegiate playing career short to pursue a professional career with the Minnesota Twins - the team that drafted him in the sixth round of the 1995 amateur draft. In six seasons with the Twins farm system Gunderson batted .259 in nearly 400 games. He posted 327 hits with 77 doubles, 13 triples, 28 home runs and 167 RBI playing his way to Minnesota's AA team in New Britain, Conn.
Gunderson earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Minnesota in 2007 and continues work towards a master's degree in sport studies at Bemidji State.
Gunderson takes over for Jeremy Popp who left the program in 2010 after two seasons.