Colleen Bannister
Colleen Bannister
Title: Softball Coach
Phone: 413-572-5405
First Year As Head Coach At Westfield: 2016
Recent Highlights:
2018 season: Colleen Bannister was named the MASCAC’s 2018 Champion's Choice Softball Coach of the Year, leading the Owls to a 10-4 MASCAC record and the third seed in the MASCAC Tournament. The Owls advanced to the title game by eliminating top seed Worcester State, before falling to #2 Framingham 1-0 in title game.   Westfield had four players chosen to the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) all-conference teams; Senior third-baseman Maddy Atkocaitis and junior catcher Caitlin Hughes were named to the first team, while sophomore second-baseman Kaitlynn Prophet and freshman pitcher Emily Arredondo were selected to the second team. 
2017 season:  Bannister guided the Owls to an 11-3 league record and the #2 seed in the conference tournament. The Owls advanced to title game before falling to top seed Framingham, 5-4.  Westfield State University's softball team had six players chosen to MASCAC all-conference teams on Wednesday. Senior pitcher and first-baseman Julia Sullivan, sophomore catcher Caitlin Hughes and sophomore pitcher Sarah Eugenio were all named to the first team while senior short stop Liz Kelly, junior catcher Angelica Banning and sophomore left-fielder Bri Tortora were selected to the second team.
2016 season: Bannister was named the 2016 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference coach of the year after she led the Owls to a 10-4 record in the MASCAC, securing the third-seed in the conference tournament and winning an opening round playoff game.  The Owls won 17 games after returning from their annual Florida spring training trip.   Four member of the Owls were named as All-MASCAC players, and 3B Maddy Atkocaitis and P/1B Julia Sullivan were both named to the ECAC All-New England team.

Before Westfield State:
A native of Western Mass, Bannister was an NCAA Division I softball player at Bucknell University.  She was a second-team all-Patriot League player and a District L honorable mention All-American in 1995.  She played on teams at Bucknell that never finished lower than third in the league standings, won a conference regular season title, and advanced to the league’s title game. Primarily a catcher, she also played second base, first base and served as designated player for the Bison.
She participated in the Olympic softball trials and later toured Latin America with Athletes in Action’s national team in 1994.
As a player, Bannister hit .675 in her high-school softball career at Stoneleigh-Burnham School and was a two-time MVP of the New England Private School Association where her team also captured a NEPSAC title. She played shortstop, pitched, and caught.
She has 10 years of experience as a softball coach at the high school level, with her team reaching the Western or Central Mass tournament in seven of those 10 seasons. Most recently, Bannister served as head coach at Athol High School, where she guided the Raiders to 13-6 regular season record before falling in the Western Mass semifinals to Monson.
In her most recent coaching position, she had a coaching record of 41-23 from 2013-2015 at Athol, advancing to the Western Mass tournament each season. She had previous coaching stints at Pioneer and Athol, and her teams won Western Mass titles in 1997, ‘98 and ’99.
In addition to coaching softball, Colleen has also coached field hockey and basketball at the high school level, and has sent multiple players to the collegiate ranks. Bannister is also a certified umpire for ASA, PONY, and National Federation Tournaments.
Bannister holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bucknell University in education and psychology, and a Master of Science degree from Syracuse University in counselor education. She is pursuing her CAGS in educational leadership and management at Fitchburg State.