High School Sports

‘It means everything to me.’ Atwater promotes one of its own as new softball coach.

Jenna Boesch, Atwater High
Jenna Boesch, Atwater High

Jenna Boesch knew at an early age she wanted to become a high school softball coach. Her ultimate goal was to become the Atwater High softball coach.

So you can imagine her excitement when she was named the new Atwater softball coach late last week. Boesch was an assistant junior varsity coach at Atwater High this past spring.

“It means everything to me,” said Boesch, who also is a physical education teacher at Atwater. “From when I started playing in high school, I knew I wanted to be a teacher and a coach.”

Boesch takes over for Robert Santistevan, who stepped down at the end of the season after coaching the Falcons for 7 years.

“I enjoy softball,” Santistevan said. “I kind of did the time in the program that I promised. I said I would coach for six or seven years. I’ve been offered to coach with Suzanne (McGhee) at Merced College so I will still be around softball.”

Boesch, 24, graduated from Atwater in 2012. She just finished her first year as a teacher at the school.

“Jenna is a smart, young lady,” Santistevan said. “She’s been playing ball her whole life. She has good support from her family. She’ll have Joe Leonardo and her father, Reggie, around to help She’ll be just fine.”

One of the first things Boesch did when interviewing for the job was to ask Leonardo to come back to Atwater and help her.

“I’m excited to bring back Joe Leonardo,” Boesch said. “He was my coach in high school. I feel he’s the best coach around here.”

Boesch said when she was a player, she tried to learn as much about the game as she could. She wanted to know why they ran certain plays in different situations. She did her best to tap into the minds of her coaches because she knew she wanted to coach one day.

Now that she’s a coach, Boesch wants her teams to live up to a certain standard. She wants her teams to play the right way, which means to hustle, be fundamentally sound and respect the game. She also wants to make sure her players have fun.

Boesch hopes her players enjoy the game like she did when she played.

“I fell in love with the sport when I was middle school,” Boesch said. “Once I got to high school I was around great coaches. I know the impact that they had on me. I want to have that same impact in the future.”

Shawn Jansen: 209-385-2462, @MSSsports