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Gophers softball coach Jessica Allister leaves after record-setting season

Fresh off a No. 1 national ranking, Jessica Allister is leaving the Gophers.
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A record-setting season was Jessica Allister's last with the Gophers.

The softball coach announced Tuesday that she's leaving the University of Minnesota for the same job at her alma mater, Stanford, where she was a catcher on a pair of College World Series teams (2001, 2004).

"Minnesota will always hold a special place in my heart," Allister said in a release. "I am so thankful for the opportunity Joel Maturi gave me seven years ago to lead this great program. It is hard to walk away but the opportunity to coach at my alma mater is something I have always dreamed of."

Allister led the Gophers to a club record 56 wins and their first-ever No. 1 national ranking last season. Despite their dominance and Big Ten regular season and tournament titles, the NCAA Selection Committee didn't give the top-ranked Gophers one of the 16 home sites in the NCAA Tournament. That forced Minnesota to play on the road where they lost to 16-seed Alabama.

A national search for the next Gophers softball coach is underway.

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