Kelly Inouye-Perez is beginning her ninth season as the Bruins' head coach in 2015 and has an overall record of 347-116 (.749).
Last season, the Bruins recorded the nation's best winning percentage (.867) with a 52-8 record, the most wins for a UCLA team since 2003, including a Feb. 8 victory at Hawai'i which was the 300th win of Inouye-Perez's head coaching career. UCLA finished second in the Pac-12 Conference (19-5) and tied for ninth nationally, reaching the Super Regional round of the NCAA Tournament. The Bruin softball coaching staff was recognized as the NFCA West Region Coaching Staff of the Year, the second time under Inouye-Perez's tenure that UCLA has earned NFCA CSOY honors (2010).
The Bruins ranked fourth nationally in slugging, ninth in batting average and home runs per game, 13th in runs per game and 18th in earned run average, setting school records in on base percentage and walks. Two Bruins, Ally Carda and Stephany LaRosa, earned NFCA First Team All-American accolades, with Carda also being named a Top Three finalist for the USA Softball National Player of the Year Award. Carda, who was also the Pac-12 Player of the Year, was one of six Bruins named NFCA All-West Region and nine named to the All-Pac-12 Teams.
In 2013, the Bruins posted a 40-20 record, tied for fifth in the Pac-12 with a 10-14 mark and reached the Regional Championship game of the Louisville Regional. B.B. Bates was named Second Team NFCA All-American, while Bates and LaRosa both earned Easton All-American honors. Bates, Carda, LaRosa and Gracie Goulder were named NFCA All-Region, while five more Bruins were named to the All-Pac-12 Teams.
In 2012, UCLA went 36-20 and tied for fourth in the Pac-12 with a 12-12 record. Four Bruins earned All-American honors, tied for the most for one season during Inouye-Perez's tenure (2008) and tied for the most for any school in 2012, as LaRosa was named First Team, Andrea Harrison and Katie Schroeder Second Team and Samantha Camuso Third Team. Eight were named to the All-Pac-12 Team, including Freshman of the Year LaRosa, while six were All-Region winners.
In 2011, UCLA recorded a 36-19 mark and tied for sixth in the Pac-10 (9-12). Nine Bruins were honored on the All-Conference Teams, while Harrison was named First Team All-Region and All-American. Inouye-Perez earned her 200th career victory on March 11 against Sacramento State.
In 2010, Inouye-Perez led the UCLA softball program to its 12th national title and 11th NCAA Championship in 2010. The Bruins (50-11) went a perfect 10-0 in the postseason, including 5-0 at the Women's College World Series. UCLA set numerous WCWS records, including the most home runs in one tournament with 14. Megan Langenfeld was named the Most Outstanding Player of the WCWS, while Camuso and Harrison each earned All-Tournament honors. Following the season, Inouye-Perez and her staff were honored as the NFCA National Coaching Staff of the Year.
UCLA set single-season school records for home runs and slugging percentage. Langenfeld and GiOnna DiSalvatore were each named to the NFCA All-American First Team. The Bruins also had three players named to the All-Region Team and 10 honored by the Pac-10.
In 2009, she led the Bruins to a Pacific-10 Conference Championship, as UCLA went 45-11 overall and 16-5 in league play. She was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year and earned her 100th career victory on Feb. 22 against Maryland. In 2008, the Bruins went 51-9 and advanced to the Women's College World Series, finishing second in the Pac-10 with a 17-4 record. In her first season at the helm of UCLA in 2007, Inouye-Perez posted a 37-18 overall record and a 12-9 Pac-10 mark (T-3rd).
Over Inouye-Perez's eight seasons, the Bruins have earned 19 All-American awards, 35 All-Region honors and 59 All-Pac-10/12 accolades.
Inouye-Perez, just the third head coach in UCLA softball history, officially took over the reins from Sue Enquist on Jan. 1, 2007. Enquist announced her retirement as head coach on Sept. 26, 2006.
No stranger to the Bruin dugout, Inouye-Perez starts her 27th straight season in Westwood in 2015. She is a link to four decades of Bruin softball success, joining the UCLA softball program as a freshman in 1989. Inouye-Perez's time is highlighted by seven NCAA Championships and eight Pac-10 titles in her previous 26 years, spending five campaigns as a player and 13 as an assistant coach.
Over Inouye-Perez's 13 seasons (1994-2006) as an assistant coach, UCLA was 617-150-1 (.804) and appeared in the NCAA title game seven times, winning the NCAA Championship in the 1999, 2003 and 2004 seasons. The Bruins also won three Pac-10 titles during that span (1999, 2002, 2006) and in 2004 were named the National Coaching Staff of the Year by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA).
Inouye-Perez's primary responsibility as an assistant coach was guiding the Bruin pitchers and catchers, a list which includes many of the most honored and recognizable names in collegiate softball. Behind the dish, where Inouye-Perez also starred as a three-time All-Pac-10 honoree during her playing days at UCLA, she helped mold and influence arguably the best catcher in the history of USA Softball in Stacey Nuveman. Under Inouye-Perez's tutelage, Nuveman became a three-time Pac-10 Player of the Year, four-time, First Team All-American and the NCAA's all-time single-season and career home run leader.
Since the Pac-10 Conference began issuing a Pitcher of the Year Award, UCLA has been honored with two winners, Courtney Dale in 1999 and Keira Goerl in 2003. Among the other pitching highlights accomplished by the Bruins over her 13 years as an assistant included at least one All-American award earned by a UCLA pitcher in 12 of those campaigns, including DeeDee Weiman, four-time Olympian Tanya Harding and two-time Olympian Amanda Freed.
In addition, nearly every UCLA pitching record has been set during the time Inouye-Perez has overseen the Bruin battery and the top four pitchers on UCLA's career wins list, Goerl, Selden, Freed and B'Ann Burns, were coached by her.
As a player, Inouye-Perez was an exceptionally strong fielder behind the dish for the Bruins. She made her mark immediately as a collegiate player, earning First Team All-Pac-10 as a true freshman and Second Team as a sophomore, leading the Bruins to the 1989 and 1990 NCAA Championships before receiving a medical redshirt in 1991 due to shoulder surgery.
She came back strong in 1992, picking up Second Team All-Pac-10 honors as the Bruins once again won the national championship and finished with a 54-2 record, the fewest losses in a season in program history. Inouye-Perez also was named to the 1992 All-Women's College World Series Team, going 5-for-12 (.417) with four RBI during WCWS play. She wrapped up her career as a fifth-year senior in 1993 with an NCAA runner-up finish. Impressively, Inouye-Perez did not commit a single fielding error during her final two seasons.
Among the UCLA pitchers during her five seasons as a player were Lisa Longaker and Lisa Fernandez, both of whom were named to the NCAA's 25th Anniversary All-WCWS Team. During her UCLA career, Inouye-Perez played in 22 Women's College World Series games, a mark that is tied for third-best in UCLA history behind only Lisa Fernandez and Kristy Howard (23). Inouye-Perez graduated from UCLA in 1993 with a B.A. in psychology and earned her master's degree in physical education from Azusa Pacific University in 2004.
Prior to college, Inouye-Perez was one of the top players during her ASA days, winning four national championships, with the Panthers (1984, '85 and '89) and the Raiders (1986). She also competed on an international level in Japan in 1985 and in Peru in 1987 (Pan American Qualifier) and followed her collegiate career with time playing on the NPF Pro Tour.
Inouye-Perez and her husband, Gerardo Perez, currently reside in Cerritos. Along with Kelly's exploits on the diamond, Gerardo competed as a catcher/DH for Cerritos College from 1988-90 and helped lead the Falcons to the 1989 Junior College National Championship. After a stellar career at Cerritos, he went on to compete at Loyola Marymount, earning First Team All-West Coast Conference honors his junior and senior seasons. He currently teaches health and coaches baseball at Gahr High School in Cerritos. The couple has two children, Michael (15) and Kylie (10).
Kelly Inouye-Perez's Career Head Coaching Record