Mustang Coaching Staff
Head Coach Brian Drent
Brian Drent has an 86-73 record after his first three seasons as the Mustangs' head coach.
In his first season with the team, Drent guided the Mustangs to a 37-21 record and a second place finish in the 2012 GPAC regular season standings with a 13-7 league mark.
Drent was previously the head coach at Sioux City North High School, where his teams compiled a 157-48 record for a .766 winning percentage in five seasons. He guided the Stars to a 36-7 record and Iowa’s Class 4A state championship during the 2009 season. He led North to three consecutive state tournament appearances and four consecutive Missouri River Activities Conference championships. Drent was named the 2009 Iowa High School Baseball Coaches Association (IHSBCA) Iowa Class 4A Coach of the Year and has been named the IHSBCA Class 4A West District Coach of the Year each of the past four seasons.
Drent attended Morningside for one year following his graduation from Worthington High School in Minnesota and earned first-team All-North Central Conference honors as a centerfielder when he batted .310 with four home runs and 15 RBIs for Morningside during the 1993 campaign. He then attended Indian Hills Community College for one year and was drafted in the 13th round by Major League Baseball’s Chicago White Sox. Drent spent three seasons in the White Sox Minor League system and played for the Greenville Bluesmen of the independent Texas-Louisiana League during the 1998 campaign.
Drent graduated from Bellevue University in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in physical education with a minor in coaching from Peru State College and a master’s degree in special education from the University of Nebraska-Kearney.
He was an assistant men’s basketball coach at Worthington Community College and an assistant baseball coach at Millard North High School and an assistant basketball coach at Millard South High School in Nebraska earlier in his career.
Assistant Coach Gabe Grinder
Gabe Grinder completed his first season as the Mustangs’ pitching coach in 2014.
Grinder came to Morningside from Southeastern University in Lakeland, Fla., where he was the pitching coach for a team that posted a 39-29 record during the 2013 season and ranked second nationally in the NAIA with a school-record 507 strikeouts. The Fire’s pitching staff also set school records with 555.2 innings pitched and a 3.81 earned run average and the team was the runner-up at the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) World Series. The pitching staff produced NAIA First-Team All-American Phil Kish, who was signed by the Toronto Blue Jays, and NAIA Honorable Mention All-American Johnnie Kirkland, who was drafted by the Detroit Tigers.
Prior to Southeastern, Grinder helped start the varsity program at Florida Christian College, where he was the pitching coach for a team that won 27 games and was the runner-up at the NCCAA World Series.
Grinder is a graduate of Southeastern, where he recorded 20 saves and compiled a 3.59 earned run average during his career. He earned first-team All-South Region honors and was a NAIA honorable mention All-American during the 2009 season when he compiled a 2-2 record with a 2.81 earned run average and ranked third nationally with 14 saves.
Assistant Coach Steve Drent
Steve Drent was one of the premier players in the North Central Conference (NCC) during his playing career at Morningside.
Drent was a two-time All-NCC catcher and the 1992 NCC Most Valuable Player when he led the league in hitting with a .491 batting average. That season he also topped the NCC with 26 hits and 24 RBIs.