When the opportunity of a lifetime presents itself to you, there is only one thing to do; jump on it.
Such is the case for former Mamou head baseball coach Dale Serie. After guiding the Demons to 34 wins in the last two seasons, Serie has accepted an assistant coaching position for the McNeese State University softball team.
For Serie, it was a the opportunity he had been looking for since he began coaching youth baseball at the ripe old age of 18.
“It has always been a dream of mine to coach on the collegiate level,” stated Serie. “But, I knew it would have to be the right team and the right situation because I loved my job at Mamou. This will allow me to gain some valuable experience and build up my resume. .”
So how does a high school baseball coach get the chance to be an assistant in a collegiate softball program?
Very simply, through hard work, dedication to his profession and recognition of a job well done not only on the baseball diamond but on the softball field as well.
It turns out Serie did not just coach baseball. He had also been coaching softball since 2013.
“I was asked to coach some rec softball in 2013,” said Serie. “That summer, I also coached the Mamou 10U Pony All-Stars. We made it all the way to the World Series and won it. Even though the basics of baseball and softball are the same, there are some different strategies. That experience got me interested in continuing to coach softball.”
That experience led Serie to begin coaching a 12U team this fall for the Louisiana Bombers, one of the biggest select softball organizations in the state. The Bombers have teams from 8U all the way up to 18U.
Serie’s 12U team has played in a number of tournaments throughout the southern part of the United States over the past year. Currently, the Bombers are ranked as the No. 1 team in the country at their age division.
“We have players from all over the state playing for us,” commented Serie. “Girls from Lake Charles, Lafayette, Baton Rouge and West Monroe are all a part of our squad. We even have a player from Fairview.”
While coaching the Bombers, Serie ran into and old coach of his at a banquet held by the organization. That former coach just so happened to be McNeese State head softball coach James Landreneau. It was there that the re-connection was made and the process of bringing Serie to the Cowgirl program began.
“Coach Landreneau coached me when I was a 12 year-old all-star and we have kept in touch throughout the years,” said Serie. “We we met at the banquet, he approached me about coming to McNeese as an assistant. So, during baseball season, he called again and told me he had an opening.”
“When he said that, I jumped on the offer,” he continued. “I was so excited he reached out to me. It just shows me he values my work ethics.”
Serie’s official title at McNeese will be Operations Manager. But his job duties will encompass a number of aspects.
“I will be in charge of hitters and infielders for sure,” stated Serie. “But, I will also have other duties like charting hitters and game day responsibilities.”
Besides being an assistant coach, Serie will also get the opportunity to be a student again, working toward a degree in education that he did not get the chance to finish.
The biggest challenge for Serie in undertaking this new job is the knowledge that he will not be able to coach his son anymore on the baseball diamond. A sophomore at Mamou high, Kayden Serie has been coach by his dad since he first started playing the game.
“It will be an adjustment for both of us,” said Serie. “I have been his coach for a long time. But, I know he is excited for me and my new challenge. Now I can have more father-son talks and less coach-player talks with him. I will be able to appreciate his effort and love of the game more. I could not do that as much as I wanted as a coach.”
No doubt, when facing any new situation, having family behind you is a huge advantage.