The University of Denver gymnastics coaching staff were named the 2019 National Coaches of the Year, the Women’s Collegiate Gymnastics Association announced.
Head coach Melissa Kutcher-Rinehart was named the National Coach of the Year while associate head coach Linas Gaveika and assistant coach Jay Hogue were named National Assistant Coaches of the Year.
The Pioneers concluded their 2019 campaign with a fourth-place finish at the NCAA National Championships, the highest the team has ever placed. It secured DU’s final national ranking of No. 4, a program record for highest-ever ranking, regular- or postseason.
Together, Kutcher-Rinehart, Gaveika and Hogue were instrumental in several program firsts in 2019. Denver advanced to the final championship round at the NCAA National Championships for the first time ever – and doing so with the narrowed field of just four teams. The Pioneers collected the program’s first-ever victories over Alabama and Florida, and just its second over Georgia. DU achieved its first-ever top five national ranking and was never ranked outside of the top eight nationally during the season. Additionally, seven of the top nine scores in school history were set in 2019.
Kutcher-Rinehart adds National Coach of the Year to her collection of awards in 2019 that includes Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year and Region 2 Coach of the Year.
Gaveika and Hogue also shared Region 2 Assistant Coach of the Year honors this season.
National coaching awards are determined by a coaches’ vote.