Rebekah VanDijk departs as the all-time rebounder and first to have more than 1,000 points and rebounds.
No. 3 UT Arlington opens its play in the SBC Championship tournament against No. 6 Louisiana on Thursday.
The winner of Saturday's contest will earn the second seed in next week's conference tournament
UT Arlington will honor Rebekah VanDijk, Miranda LeJune and Shelby Richards prior to Saturday's game.
Postgame comments following UTA's home victory over Georgia Southern
WBB: UTA at Little Rock
Costa Rica Day 1 Tour
UTA vs. Ottawa
A selection of Brad Loper photos from the UTA women's basketball team's Sun Belt Championship semifinal against Troy.
WBB: UTA vs. Troy (Senior Night) - Photos by Ellman Photography
Krista Gerlich has guided a resurgence for the Lady Mavericks since being named head coach on April 11, 2013.
Guiding UTA between a motto of "Change 4 Championships" and "Decide to Dance", Gerlich has helped the Lady Mavericks set their sights on becoming a power in the Sun Belt Conference. The Lady Mavs reached the SBC semifinals in 2016-17, a first since 2009, and earned the program's third all-time bid into the Women's NIT. The program had the third most wins in program history at 22 and finished with the second-best winning percentage. The Lady Mavs also picked up their first-ever votes in the USA Today Coaches' Poll after a 5-0 start, the best since 1977.
The record-breaking campaign saw Rebekah VanDijk become the program's 18th player to be a member of the 1,000-point club as the first-team All-SBC selection had a career season. Cierra Johnson was named the SBC Defensive Player of the Year as the up-tempo defense helped Johnson lead the league in steals per game and come within just one steal of the single-season record.
Also a first in program history, Gerlich's squad posted a winning record in every month of the season, something that had not done prior.
UTA has earned three consecutive trips to the Sun Belt Conference Championship tournament, as well as garnering an invitation to the 2015 Women's Preseason National Invitation Tournament. The Lady Mavericks went from just four wins in 2013-14 to a 17-win campaign in the 2014-2015 season, setting a record for largest single-season increase in the program's history, and equaling the largest turnaround in NCAA Division I between the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons.
During the 2014-15 season, VanDijk was named the Sun Belt Freshman of the Year, as well as VanDijk earned a second-team selection to join Desherra Nwanguma as Gerlich’s first pair of all-conference team selections while at UTA.
The Lady Mavericks battled through an injury-riddled 2015-16 campaign to post a 15-16 record. The team finished 34th nationally in scoring defense at 56.5 points per game - second in the Sun Belt. VanDijk led the Lady Mavs with 12.2 points per game and was named to the All-Sun Belt second team. Cierra Johnson was on the Sun Belt third team, which tallied Gerlich's fourth all-conference selection for the Mavericks.
Prior to joining UTA in 2013, Gerlich spent seven seasons as the head coach at West Texas A&M University.
Gerlich compiled an impressive record of 168-53 in seven seasons at West Texas A&M. Her teams won four consecutive South Division Lone Star Conference titles from 2007-10 and three consecutive Lone Star Conference championships from 2008-10.
Gerlich guided the Lady Buffs to a 20-12 record overall and a 14-6 mark in the Lone Star Conference this past season. The Lady Buffs earned a berth in the Lone Star Conference championship game, while finishing third in the league standings during the regular season.
While at WT, Gerlich became the quickest coach in WTAMU history to record 100, 125 and 150 wins. Gerlich guided the Lady Buffs to the NCAA Tournament in 2011-12 and a 30-4 record in 2009-10 as it was the first 30-win season for the Lady Buffs since 1994. The 2009-10 squad won the LSC title, the 11th in school history, and finished third in the NCAA South Central Regional tournament.
Gerlich guided the Lady Buffs to the Elite Eight in 2009 for the first time in 11 seasons as they finished 28-6 with their fourth-consecutive LSC South Division title and second-consecutive LSC Tournament championship. In Gerlich's first season at WT, she guided the team to a 28-5 record in 2006-07 and a perfect 14-0 record in LSC league play, while earning Coach of the Year honors in the LSC South Division.
Gerlich spent three seasons with another highly successful West Texas women's basketball program, serving as an assistant to Hall of Fame coach Marsha Sharp at Texas Tech. During her time in Lubbock, Gerlich helped guide the Lady Raiders to two NCAA tournament appearances, including a 24-8 overall record, a 12-4 Big 12 mark and a spot in the Sweet 16 during the 2004-05 campaign.
While on the Tech bench, Gerlich was heavily involved in almost every aspect of the program as she instructed preseason individual workouts, coached the perimeter players, reviewed film and handled game day preparations for the Lady Raiders. Throughout the school year she also assisted in the academic progress of the Lady Raider student-athletes.
Before returning to coaching with Texas Tech during the 2003-2004 season, Gerlich took some time off to start a family; she spent the 2002-2003 year teaching math at Hereford High School, where her husband, Bryan, was the athletic director and head football coach.
After graduating from Texas Tech in 1993 with a degree in exercise and sports science, Gerlich got her first coaching job at Lockney High School as the head girls' basketball coach. From 1994-1997, she was the head girls' coach at Taft High School in San Antonio, Texas. Gerlich entered the college ranks as an assistant at UTSA from 1997-1999. Gerlich followed her position at UTSA by accepting the head coaching job at San Antonio Reagan High School from 1999-2000. In the inaugural season at Reagan, the team posted a 20-5 mark.
Gerlich received her master's degree in educational administration in 1997 from Texas A&M-Kingsville. During a stellar playing career at Texas Tech, Gerlich played shooting guard from 1989-1993 and helped guide the squad to the 1993 National Championship, while picking up All-Southwest Conference honors three times. She also was named to the 1993 SWC All-Tournament team, the 1993 West Regional All-Tournament team and the 1993 Final Four All-Tournament team.
Gerlich was selected to the All-Time SWC team, while being named one of the Panhandle's Top 100 Athletes of the Century. During her senior campaign, she became Tech's all-time assist leader by finishing with 553 assists, which now ranks third all-time in program history. In 1993, she was named the NCAA Texas Woman of the Year. On Dec. 5, 1993, Gerlich's No. 21 was retired and now hangs in the rafters at the United Spirit Arena, making her one of just three Lady Raiders to have her number retired.
The Spearman, Texas, native was a three time all-state selection in basketball while attending Sudan (Texas) High and Spearman High School. She was a member of the 1987 state championship basketball team at Sudan HS, where her father, Jim Kirkland, was her high school basketball coach. In 1988, she helped Spearman HS claim the cross country state championship and was a four time all-state selection in cross country. She placed third at the 1989 state track meet in the 1600 meters.
Gerlich and her husband, Bryan, who is also a Texas Tech graduate and a former linebacker on the Red Raider football team (1987-1992), have a daughter, Bryn, and a son, Brayden.
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