Gary Lytle has been named the new head coach of the Beatrice softball team.

BHS Athletic Director Neal Randel made the announcement Wednesday afternoon.

Lytle takes over for Dennis Dodge, who served as the interim head coach during most of the 2017 season after the previous head coach, John Fossler, stepped down.

Lytle said he's excited about taking over the program.

"I've been coaching softball for 10 years now and I felt like I had something to offer," Lytle said. "It just seemed like the right fit at the right time for me."

According to a press release from Randel, Lytle has coached fast pitch softball in the Beatrice area for the past 10 years. Prior to that, he coached Beatrice Legion baseball for nine years.

Lytle is also the co-founder of the Nebraska Elite fast pitch organization, which currently has 150 girls and 11 teams competing. Recently, he also served as a volunteer assistant with the Beatrice High School team.

Lytle is employed full time at the Plymouth Cooperative and also serves as a Gage County Supervisor.

Beatrice softball has seen a lot of success over the past 20 years. Lytle said he was proud to have played and coached in such a successful baseball program, but has also recognized the extraordinary success that Beatrice softball has achieved over the years.

"I really respect what all the previous coaches have done with this softball program," Lytle said. "When you look back, a lot of good softball players have come through here and it's an honor to have the opportunity to coach here. Hopefully, we can live up to the expectations that the softball community has in Beatrice."

Lytle said that every coach has their different style and he's no different. He said they definitely want to be an aggressive and intense team and he's not shy about expressing what their ultimate goal is.

"When it comes to high school softball, we want to win state titles," Lytle said. "But we're going to start out with the goal of giving the girls a good experience and trying to get them to achieve the most success as possible."

Lytle takes over a Lady O softball team that finished with a record of 14-17 last season.

As his first act as the new coach, Lytle would like to meet with all potential Beatrice High School softball players for the 2018 season on Wednesday, Nov. 29 at 2:30 p.m. in room 133 at BHS.