Cora Ianiro's pinch hit triple plates game-winner
LaBovick and Daubman Strong in Circle, Help Improve the Rams to 18-11 on the Season
Rams to Take Part In Dot Richardson Collegiate Invitational
In Conjunction with TEAM IMPACT, Rams Welcome 14-Year-Old Bronx Native Gloria Mateo to Rose Hill
Ram Coach Honored with Easton Victory Club Award
Day 1 of the NCAA Softball Regional saw the Fordham Rams get in some practice, a press conference, and a trip to the National Softball Hall of Fame & Museum and ASA Hall of Stadium
Photos from Fordham's viewing party for the softball selection show.
Photos from softball's doubleheader against Lehigh on April 10th
Action photos from Sunday's A-10 doubleheader between Fordham and Rhode Island
Photos from Fordham's Two Wins over La Salle
In May of 2001, the Fordham University softball program had just completed its 17th varsity year and was still looking for its first winning season. Searching for a new head coach who could infuse a new attitude into the program and take it in a new direction, the Rams found Bridget Orchard. Under her guidance, and with her youthful energy and tremendous passion for the game, the Rams have become one of the top programs in the Atlantic 10 and the nation. As Orchard opens her 12th year at the helm in 2013, she looks to continue to guide Fordham softball to new heights as the Rams enter the next stage of the program.
During her time in the Bronx, Orchard has amassed a record of 428-274-1, which gives her the most wins and best winning percentage (.609) in Fordham softball history. Her ledger includes two NCAA Regional appearances, an A-10 Championship, back-to-back 40-win seasons, four A-10 Coach of the Year awards, and just one losing season out of 10.
After winning 14 games in her first season, Orchard was named the 2003 Atlantic 10 Softball Coach of the Year, guiding Fordham to what was then its finest season in team history, recording a school record 37 wins and the Rams' first-ever appearance in the Atlantic 10 Softball Championship. At the time, she was the third Fordham head coach to receive the Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year honors. The 2003 Rams also made the NCAA record book, as the team had a 23 ½ game improvement from the 2002 season, the 7th best turnaround in NCAA history.
After another 30-win season in 2004, Orchard led the Rams to their first Atlantic 10 Championship game in 2005, and had a number of players garner major honors. Fordham swept the major Atlantic 10 Awards with Katie Davis earning Player of the Year honors, Sara Kinney garnering the Pitcher of the Year, and having Laura Klaiber selected as Rookie of the Year, while Orchard captured her second Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year Award in three seasons. She also received her first "Iron Major" Award as Fordham Coach of the Year after the team set new records with 38 overall wins and 15 conference wins. The Rams also had three All-Conference players, three All-Region selections, two Academic All-Atlantic 10 picks, and two All-Atlantic 10 Championship players.
Following that season, a team record nine players earned All-Conference honors in 2006. The Rams also made their second straight Atlantic 10 Championship game appearance in 2006 while recording 37 wins, which tied for the second most in team history.
In 2007, the Rams had five All-Conference players, four All-Mid-Atlantic Region picks, and the Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year for the fourth time in Orchard's tenure. Orchard also reached a personal milestone in 2007, recording her 200th win at Fordham, which came against Saint Louis at the Atlantic 10 Championship tournament.
2008 marked the sixth consecutive winning season for Orchard at Fordham as they team finished with a 36-30 record. The Rams advanced to the A-10 Championship and pulled off an exciting, extra-innings victory over St. Bonaventure before being eliminated by Charlotte.
The following year saw the Rams post their third best winning percentage up to that point as the team compiled a 37-22 record (.627). Fordham advanced to the A-10 Championship once again and even pulled off an upset of then #24 Massachusetts during the regular season.
2010 was a season for the ages for Coach Orchard. The team set new high-water marks in wins (49), earned votes in a top 25 poll, garnered the school's first-ever at-large invitation to the NCAA Championship and had two NCAA Regional wins. The team closed the regular season with a 21 game winning streak and set 44 new school records. 2010's team posted an overall record of 49-12, which translated to an .803 in winning percentage. The .803 mark set a new school record, surpassing the 2007 team which posted a .661 winning percentage after a 39-20 overall record.
2011 saw the Rams get over the hump and capture the school's first-ever Atlantic 10 title. Orchard was named Coach of the Year in the conference and the entire staff was chosen as the Staff of the Year by the NFCA. The team won 42 games, and defeated Penn State in the NCAA Regional.
In 2012, the Rams registered yet another winning record, finishing 32-36 with a 14-6 mark in the Atlantic 10.
Overall in Orchard's 11-year tenure at Fordham, the Rams have had one All-American (Jen Mineau - 2010, 2011), three Atlantic 10 Player of Year honorees (2005, 2010 and 2011) one Pitcher of the Year (in 2005) selection, five Atlantic 10 Rookies of the Year (2003-05, 2007, 2010), four Academic All-Americans (Erin Brooks - 2003-04, Mary Beth Puccio - 2008, Jen Mineau 2011), two Atlantic 10 Student-Athlete of the Year (Puccio - 2009, Mineau - 2010), 47 All-Atlantic 10 selections, 27 All-Mid-Atlantic Region picks, four ECAC All-Stars, and 12 Academic All-Conference awards. In addition, Orchard already ranks among the winningest active coaches in the country with a .608 winning percentage entering the 2012 season.
Prior to Fordham, Orchard spent four seasons as the head coach at Cabrini College in Radnor, Pennsylvania.
As head coach at Cabrini, Orchard posted a 129-42-2 career record, leading the squad to two straight NCAA Division III Tournament bids. In 2001, Cabrini was a finalist in the NCAA East Regional, and the squad was an NCAA Atlantic Regional finalist in 2000. Cabrini won three straight Pennsylvania Athletic Conference regular season championship titles under Orchard, and in 2001 the Cavaliers were ranked 10th in the nation by USA Today.
In 2001 under Orchard, the Cavaliers led the NCAA Division III in hitting, pitching, and fielding. The squad took third place at the NFCA Leadoff Classic among the top 25 teams in the nation, and also won both the Cortlandt/Ithaca and Salisbury State Tournaments. Cabrini posted a 42-5 overall record and a 21-1 conference tally in 2001. Four of Orchard's players were named Division III All-Americans in 2001. Orchard was named the Division III East Regional Coach of the Year in 2001, and she was one of eight Division III National Coach of the Year candidates. A three-time PAC Coach of the Year, she was selected to coach the USA Athletes International Team in Germany in 2000.
Orchard took over the Cabrini squad in 1998 and built the Cavaliers into a national powerhouse in just four seasons. In her first season, Cabrini posted a 22-12-1 overall record, and improved to 26-14-1 the following season. In 2000 the Cavaliers went 39-9, and her 42-5 record in 2001 marks the most productive season in the school's history. In Orchard's four seasons, Cabrini has compiled a conference record of 85-9.
Orchard's squads have also excelled off the field, as indicated by Cabrini's being ranked the fourth-highest academic team in the country by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association in 1999.
A four-year standout at Villanova University from 1994-97, Orchard still holds three Wildcat records, and led Villanova to the ECAC Championship title in 1996. Named to the First Team All-Big East, she was also a three-time All-Big East Academic Team member, and was ranked second among the toughest players in the nation to strike out.
In addition to her responsibilities as head softball coach at Cabrini, Orchard also served as the Cabrini College Director of Student Activities from 1999-2001. She received her degree in communication arts from Villanova in 1997, and earned a Masters of Education from Temple University in 2001.
Orchard currently resides in Rye Brook, New York, with her husband, Jay, and their sons, Luke and Zachary, and daughter, Isabelle.