Appalachian State athletics

BOONE — Longtime Appalachian State athletics staff member John Welch has been promoted to Associate Athletics Director for Internal Operations, Director of Athletics Doug Gillin announced Aug. 7.

Welch, who has served as assistant AD for internal operations and event management since 2014, oversees event management, facilities operations and equipment operations.

“John has done an amazing job ensuring that our facilities and game day operations provide a first-class experience for our student-athletes, coaches and fans,” Executive Associate AD Jonathan Reeder said in a statement. “He is an integral part of the success of our athletics department. He will be taking on an increased role within various areas of the department, including serving as sport administrator for both tennis programs, assisting with the development of App 105, facilities design, resource acquisition and Nike contract oversight.”

Welch joined the App State staff as the football team’s head equipment manager in 2001 and witnessed three FCS national championships and the Mountaineers’ monumental 2007 win over No. 5 Michigan during his seven-year tenure in that position.

“I would like to thank Doug Gillin and Appalachian State Athletics for this opportunity,” Welch said in a statement. “It is great to be a Mountaineer, and I look forward to continuing to be part of the championship tradition at App State.”

In his spare time, Welch has served on the Watauga County Board of Commissioners since 2012 and has been chairman since 2016. He also served on the Watauga County Board of Education from 2010-12.

A 2001 graduate of Wingate University in sport management, Welch earned a master’s in sports science from the United States Sports Academy in 2011 and an education specialist in higher education leadership from Appalachian State University in 2014.

Welch and his wife, Christy, have two children, Madison and Cameron.

Softball

BOONE – Appalachian State head softball coach Shelly Hoerner has announced the addition of Amanda Fefel to the softball coaching staff. Fefel will serve as the pitching coach and also work with the offense and defense.

“I am excited to welcome Amanda to our family. She will bring a wealth of experience with her, especially being a former head coach, which will be a great addition to our program,” Hoerner said. “What Amanda has done with the culture and success on the field at Clarendon is what set her apart from the other candidates. I was impressed with the quick turnaround she had in a tough Texas conference.”

Fefel joins the App State coaching staff after spending the past five seasons as the head softball coach at Clarendon College in Texas. During her time with the Bulldogs, Fefel compiled an impressive 183-95 record. Fefel led Clarendon to the NJCAA Tournament five straight seasons, with the Bulldogs also receiving a top 25 NJCAA ranking in 2018 and a top 10 ranking in 2019.

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