Macon Bacon hire first female coach in Coastal Plain League history
"It's an interesting job to get into as a female. You don't see many of them in the industry."
MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Before Coastal Plain League play even begins, the Macon Bacon have made history by signing the first-ever female coach in the league.
Kianna Jones, a redshirt sophomore on UNC-Chapel Hill’s softball team, joins the Bacon as the bench coach and will oversee the baseball analytics and coach the bases.
This is a momentous time for the CPL, but decisions like this don’t occur without open-minded individuals in the front office, such as the team president Brandon Raphael and head coach Kevin Soine.
“It’s an interesting job to get into as a female. You don’t see many of them in the industry,” said Jones. “So I went through a couple of interviews, and the Macon Bacon just sounded to seem like home, and everyone was super kind, super welcoming. And Kevin just had a lot of great ideas. Brandon was super welcoming. So on that meeting, after I finished, I was like, wow, these guys are amazing, super welcoming, and I was excited after the call. And that’s how I chose Macon.”
Jones hails from Surrey, British Columbia, and competed on the Canadian Women’s Junior National Team. She played one year of collegiate softball for the University of Minnesota and then transferred to UNC-Chapel Hill, where she started 50 games for UNC in 2022. She was third on the team in slugging percentage and second in home runs.
Even with this momentous hiring, the Bacon have their own struggles filling out the roster for the first few weeks of competition.
“Most of our players are Division I players, and unfortunately, the start of our season kind of overlaps with conference tournaments of Division I players,” said Soine. “So what I had to do was I had to go find a lot of really good players that are maybe at some lower levels or at some programs where they maybe didn’t qualify for that. So a lot of those players are with us right now as temporary players.”
Once the Division I playoffs finish, more players will trickle in and round off the Bacon’s roster.
But for now, catch the short-handed but still stealthy Bacon in action on opening night this Friday at 7 p.m. at Luther Williams Field against the Florence Flamingos.