UMHB names Curliss-Taylor head women's coach
Mary Hardin-Baylor has named Lisa Curliss-Taylor as the school's head women's basketball Coach, UMHB vice president for athletics Ben Shipp announced today. Curliss-Taylor becomes the ninth coach in the history of the Lady Crusader basketball program and the job also brings her back to the American Southwest Conference after a successful four-year stint as head coach at ASC member East Texas Baptist in the mid-2000's.
She replaces Kim Kirkpatrick-Thornton, who accepted a faculty position in the UMHB Exercise and Sport Science Department after serving seven seasons as head coach. The Cru were 6-19 this past season and 99-87 under Kirkpatrick-Thornton.
Curliss-Taylor comes to UMHB after spending the last five seasons as the head coach at Division II Missouri-St. Louis. She led the Tritons to a Great Lakes Valley Conference Tournament berth in 2009-10 and her team won a GLVC Tournament game for the first time in a decade. Curliss-Taylor finished her career at Missouri-St. Louis with a 42-96 record.
Prior to joining UMSL, Curliss-Taylor built a winning program at East Texas Baptist. She guided the Tigers to an ASC East Division title in 2006-07 and won East Division Coach of the Year honors that season. She went 57-48 in four seasons at ETBU and took the Tigers to three ASC Tournament berths. The Tigers posted a 40-14 record during her last two seasons with the program. Curliss-Taylor also spent two seasons as the top assistant at Washburn and was on the coaching staff when the Lady Blues advanced to the NCAA Division II Elite Eight in 2003. Curliss-Taylor was a student assistant coach at Oklahoma for two years and spent one year coaching at Norman High School in Norman, Okla.
"I am thankful to be a part of a program that has such a strong tradition, Christian atmosphere and a great support staff," Curliss-Taylor said. "I believe there are great things ahead for UMHB women's basketball."
Curliss-Taylor is a 2001 graduate of Oklahoma with a degree in broadcast journalism and electronic media. She minored in history. Curliss-Taylor also played two seasons of Division I basketball at Oral Roberts and served as team captain.
"While I was getting to know Coach Taylor, I found her to be very energetic and confident with a real passion for the game," Shipp said. "Lisa has a vision for our program, a vision of success and she has a plan to make that vision a reality."
Curliss-Taylor will start working at UMHB effective April 2. She and her husband, Preston, have a daughter, Lauren.