The WBCA announced that Steve Gomez, head coach of Lady Chaps basketball at LCU, is named the NCAA Division II National Coach of the Year. The honor of Coach of the Year has been awarded by the WBCA to an NCAA Division II head coach since 1983.
The national coach of the year is selected from a list of finalists composed of the eight regional coaches of the year, who are chosen by vote of their peers in their respective WBCA membership regions. For a list of past recipients, visit wbca.org.
"The WBCA is proud to name Steve as the 2016 United States Marine Corps/WBCA NCAA Division II National Coach of the Year," said WBCA Executive Director Danielle Donehew. "Steve was selected as the winner by his peers after leading his/her team to an exceptional season. The WBCA recognizes and applauds his leadership example that can be seen in his student-athletes, institution, and community."
The United States Marine Corps and the WBCA present the Pat Summitt Trophy, named for the legendary University of Tennessee coach, to the United States Marine Corps/WBCA National Coach of the Year annually in each of the six WBCA membership divisions (NCAA Divisions I, II and III; NAIA; junior/community college and high school).
Since taking over at Lubbock Christian, Gomez has accumulated a 312-104 collegiate coaching record. The Lady Chaparrals went to NCAA Division II at the start of 2013-14 season and have a remarkable record of 79-8 since the transition. Gomez, currently in his 13th season at LCU, has guided the top-ranked Lady Chaparrals to a flawless 33-0 record, posting the program's first unbeaten regular-season record (26-0). Lubbock Christian also won its first Heartland Conference Tournament title. Gomez was named the Heartland Conference Coach of the Year for the first time, while earning his third overall Coach of the Year honor. On Feb. 6, Gomez earned his 300th win against Newman University. Gomez helped the Lady Chaps win their first region title by knocking off West Texas A&M in the South Central Region to advance to the NCAA Division II Elite Eight where they faced Florida Southern College on March 22. After a 73-69 win against Florida Southern, the Lady Chaps will advance to the Final Four on March 23.