Apache Women’s Basketball Coaches
Laura Hughes holds a 132-52 head coaching record entering her seventh season at the helm of the Cochise College Women’s Basketball program. For the past five years, Cochise College women’s basketball has averaged more wins than any other five year stretch in its history.
Hughes guided the 2016-17 Apache squad to a 28-4 record. The most win in Cochise Women’s Basketball history. Last year’s team was also named the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference Champions, Region 1 Champions and participated in the National Championship Tournament held in Lubbock, TX. In her time at Cochise, Hughes has help guide over 30 players to basketball careers at four-year universities, including lasts year’s graduate All American, Sophia Elenga who signed at Arizona State and all-conference player Shannon Powell who signed with the University of San Francisco.
Prior to Cochise, Coach Hughes spent 15 years as an assistant coach with Arizona State University Women’s Basketball. Hughes helped lead ASU to the postseason 12 consecutive seasons, including a school-record five consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances (2005-2009). In 2009 she helped guide the Sun Devils to an Elite Eight appearance in the NCAA tournament for the second time in three seasons. At ASU Hughes was involved with every aspect of the program, including recruiting numerous top 25 classes, running summer camps, monitoring student-athletes academic progress, budgeting, on-court instruction, scouting, strength and condition and much more. She helped develop and train WNBA player Briann January (Indiana Fever) and more than 20 former ASU players who are now playing professionally overseas.
Before ASU Coach Hughes spent 2 years as a graduate assistant coach at Northern Arizona University where she earned her Master’s in Education. Hughes has more than 20 years of Division One experience, including a successful playing career at Santa Clara University. At Santa Clara, she helped guide them to an NIT championship and NCAA 2nd round appearance
while earning her Bachelor’s degree in Biology.
Yvont’e Neal joined the Apaches this summer, entering her second of year of coaching. Prior to Cochise Yvont’e Neal was an assistant coach at Garden City Community College. She hopes to bring her knowledge from court to help the girls get to the next level. Yvonte’s responsibilities will include team travel, individual workouts, scouting, recruiting, strength/conditioning, and practice and game management duties.
Yvont’e excelled at Eastlake High school, later transferring to Mount Miguel High school. During her time there she was All CIF team San Diego, East County Player of the Year, 20th Member State All-Division Team, CIF Champs and First Team All-San Diego.
Yvont’e went to play at Cal State Fullerton University in Santa Ana, CA, Cochise College in Douglas, AZ and finished at Oklahoma City University, where she won back to back National Championships (2014-15 and 2015-16), conference champs and tournament champs, Sooner conference player of the year and newcomer of the year, two-time first team all-conference, two-time first team all American, WCBA All American and five-time athletic conference player of the week. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice.
Yvont’e is a San Diego native. She is the daughter of Melody McBride and Emmanuel Neal and has one older sister.