Gillespie, Holm, Bovee sign extensions with Redbird women’s basketball, baseball, track

Kristen Gillespie
Illinois State women’s basketball coach Kristen Gillespie and the Redbirds visit the University of Illinois Saturday afternoon. (GoRedbirds.com)

By Greg Halbleib

NORMAL – Illinois State has announced women’s basketball coach Kristen Gillespie, baseball coach Steve Holm and director of track and field and cross country Jeff Bovee have signed contract extensions through 2024.

Gillespie is in her third season with the Redbirds. She signed a two-year extension after leading Illinois State to a 19-12 record last season, the most wins in six years. The 11-7 mark in the Missouri Valley Conference was the best since 2012-13.

In her first two seasons, the Redbirds claimed the Missouri Valley Conference’s Newcomer of the Year in Simone Goods and TeTe Maggett with both also earning All-MVC First Team honors.

“Kristen has made significant improvements in our women’s basketball program in a short period of time,” Illinois State Director of Athletics Larry Lyons said in a release. “We look forward to competing for championships for years to come under her leadership.”

Illinois State is 1-1 and is next in action at Illinois Saturday at 2 p.m.

Holm signed a one-year extension after leading the baseball Redbirds to the NCAA tournament and a share of the Missouri Valley Conference title in his first season last spring. The Redbirds finished 2019 with a record of 36-26, a 14-win improvement over 2018 and the most wins since 2013. The 36 wins were the most ever for a first-year coach in Redbird program history. In the NCAA regional, Illinois State defeated Big Ten champion Indiana and host Louisville before falling to Louisville in the Redbirds’ first-ever regional final.

“Steve made it very clear in his first year as a head coach that he has a very high skill set and our young men responded to his coaching,” Lyons said in a release.  “We expect good things to continue to happen at Duffy Bass Field.”

Redbird baseball opens the 2020 season Feb. 20 at Little Rock.

Bovee is in his sixth year as director of track and field and cross country and his 13th year overall at Illinois State. The Redbirds swept the Missouri Valley Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships in 2018 for the first time since 1999, earning him MVC Men’s and Women’s Coach of the Year. Bovee’s extension is for two years.

Sports Director Greg Halbleib can be reached at greg@wjbc.com. 

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