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University of West Alabama

UWA Athletics
Station 5 Livingston, AL 35470
Division 2 Alabama Southeast
Public Small Competitive team

Coaches

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Stephanie Defeo

DeFeo joins the West Alabama staff after spending eight seasons at the helm of the Mercer University softball program. While at Mercer, she was the winningest coach in program history with a 217-195 record and was the only coach to win 200 games.


Since taking over the Bear's program in 2014, DeFeo coached four CoSIDA Academic All-Americans, 2015 SoCon Pitcher of the Year Kirsten Stevens, and the 2018 SoCon Freshman of the Year Micayla Rood. She also instructed 50 all-conference performers, with 14 landing on the first team, 11 second team selections, 13 all-freshman team honorees, and 12 student-athletes who garnered all-tournament team honors. Under her direction, the team finished top-3 in the SoCon Tournament five times, including the team's only championship appearance in 2015.


Before Mercer, DeFeo served as an assistant coach at several institutions, including Purdue University, the University of Buffalo, the University of Texas at San Antonio, and Southeastern Louisiana University. She also had stops as head coach or associate head coach at Ball State University, University of North Carolina Greensboro, and East Tennessee State University.


As a student-athlete, DeFeo attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where she was an All-American and completed a bachelor's degree in criminal justice.

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Buddy Boyle

Boyle brings 24 years of fastpitch coaching experience to UWA, 22 at the collegiate level. He has won 540 games in 18 years as a head coach, 14 of those seasons at Shelton State (Ala.) Community College. Boyle moves into the full-time assistant role for the Tigers after serving as a volunteer coach last season.


Under Boyle's guidance In 2019, Shelton State won the Alabama Community College Conference/ NJCAA/Region XXII Tournament and finished seventh in the nation at the NJCAA Tournament. The Lady Bucs advanced to the finals of the NJCAA Region XXII tournament in six of Boyle's last 10 seasons and earned a berth in the NJCAA National Tournament.


Boyle was also the head softball coach at Enterprise State (Ala.) Junior College from 1997-2001 and was an assistant at Wallace Community (Ala.) College-Dothan from 2002-05. Additional coaching stops include Northview (Ala.) High School in 2006 and 2007, with his teams qualifying for the playoffs each year, participating in state and national tournaments.


Academically, Shelton State was nationally ranked for team grade point average by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association and NJCAA. Numerous players were selected as NJCAA and NFCA Academic All-Americans. The NJCAA recognized Shelton State softball as an Academic Team of the Year for all 14 years Boyle was at the helm.


Boyle coached the ACCC Player of the Year four times, and many players received scholarships from NAIA and NCAA softball programs across the nation. Over 22 years of collegiate coaching, 25 players achieved NJCAA or NFCA All-American status under Boyle, 145 were named All-Conference or All-Region and 108 were named NJCAA or NFCA Academic All-Americans.


Originally from Montgomery, Alabama, Boyle prepped at Robert E. Lee High School. He played collegiate baseball at Enterprise State Junior College, where his team won the Southern Division Championship and was ranked as high as No. 8 in the nation. He finished his college career at Auburn University-Montgomery, helping lead the Senators (now Warhawks) to second and fifth-place national finishes.


Boyle earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Troy University-Dothan. He and his wife Alison have been married 27 years.

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Mekhi Mayfield

Mekhi Mayfield joins the Tiger full-time softball staff after spending two seasons as a graduate assistant on head coach Stephanie Defeo's staff ad four seasons playing at Samford.


Her duties will be to assist the coaching staff in daily operations of the program, on-field coaching, field maintenance, recruiting, fundraising, and monitoring the academic progress of the student-athletes.


A native of Helena, Alabama, Mayfield graduated from Samford in May 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in sports administration.


While at Samford, Mayfield played in 143 games and started in 113 of them. During her last season as a Bulldog, she went 2-for-3 against Kentucky, North Dakota State, and Mercer during the regular season. She also registered a season-high of two home runs and four RBIs against the Kentucky Wildcats.


Mayfield earned her Master’s Degree in Education in 2023.

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