Earlier this year, Luke Andrews was hired as the first softball coach at Laramie High School. In less than 12 months, he’ll be coaching his first game.

On February 21, LHS announced Andrews’ appointment as head coach. It’s believed he’s the first high school softball coach in the state. His hiring was approved by Albany County School Board last month.

Ever since he’s been preparing for when the sport debuts in 2021.

Andrews admitted it is cool being the first head coach, but he hadn’t thought about that too much.

“Mostly, I was just thinking about the girls. How cool is it going to be for those girls to be part of the first LHS softball team? It's awesome, I’m not going to lie, but as I said, I’m more excited for those girls and how they feel about it.”

Andrews is a current social studies teacher and assistant football coach at Laramie High School. He also coaches the American Legion Baseball prep team in the Laramie Rangers program.

So why softball? Andrews said baseball’s been part of me since he was a kid.

“When I saw that softball was coming on, I was actually really excited because I felt like high school softball would be really good for Wyoming… Then when the (school) board finally approved it, I was like, I might have something to bring to this program. I started looking into it and had a couple of girls in a couple of my classes say, and I don’t remember their exact words, but it was something along the lines of, ‘hey, can we sign a petition to get you to sign up for or to go and coach softball?’ I was like, heck yeah, why not? I looked it up that day and am excited about it and ready to get going.”

Andrews does not have any experience coaching softball but is in his seventh year as a baseball coach.

“I know they’re not the same. Obviously, there are some differences. The fundamentals, especially fielding, that’s right in my wheelhouse. I think a lot of those carry over, transfer. I don’t think hitting is quite as different as a lot of people think it is. The mechanics are a little bit different. The ball’s, obviously, coming at a different angle. Pitching’s going to be the hardest one.”

He will tell you he’s got a year to learn, plus he knows he’s got to find a really good assistant coach.

Laramie hired Kaycee Prevedel as an assistant as of last month’s school board meeting.

Andrews added, “I said in the interview that the little stuff is probably going to be the biggest learning curve when it comes to some of those differences between baseball and softball… I’m committed. I’m definitely ready to take on the challenge and learn more about this game.”

He’s heard Laramie could have somewhere between 25-35 girls come out for the program next spring, which he believes to start a team is ‘huge.’

Andrews also said that as far as getting the program started, “Just keeping up with those girls. I mean, it comes down to getting them more interested, getting them more excited to come out to play, compete, and do everything that I can to encourage them and get them out here.”

Laramie has already started ordering uniforms and equipment, which Andrews said adds another element of excitement.

One thing you can see right away is Luke Andrews already has a passion for softball and being the head coach at LHS, and he’s got just over 11 months before he even starts the first season.

Please note that the photo used in this story was taken before schools were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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