Stephen Perry is in second first season as head coach and entering his 32th overall season for the Owens women's basketball program. He was officially named the program's head coach on June 11, 2018 after the departure of former head coach Michael Llanas.
In his first season as head coach, Coach Perry led the program to NJCAA Division III National Runner Up. His team finished with a record of 25-9 overall and a 14-2 conference mark in the OCCAC. The conference record was good enough to earn the team at least a share of the conference championship seventh straight season. It also marked the first time a Division III team won the conference in women's basketball. Perry coached three players who were named to the NJCAA All-American Team. Taylor Works was named to the first team. Freshmen Moreina Moore (2nd Team) and Shyah Wheeler (Honorable Mention) were also named to the All-American squad.
In his 13 years with Owens, the program has reached heights it never has before. Over the past seven years, the team has won seven OCCAC championships, five Region XII District I championships and finished in the top 10 at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament four times. Of those three national tournament appearances, two of the teams finished among the top five, and he 2016-17 team completed the school's first ever undefeated regular season at 30-0.
Since he was hired, the team has recorded a 295-75 record. During his tenure, Owens has compiled 44 All-OCCAC players, 18 All-Region XII players, nine NJCAA Academic All-Americans, nine WBCA All-Americans and seven NJCAA All-Americans.
In addition to that, the program has sent 26 players to four-year schools during his tenure, including Jeryn Reese (NCAA D-I La Salle University) and Sybil Roseboro (NAIA Indiana University East) this past year). He has also captured seven OCCAC championships and three district championships. In each of the past eight seasons, the team has won at least 25 games. Since February 2012, the team is 100-4 at home in the regular season.
In the 2017-18 season, Owens would finish 26-6 for the season, which garnered the program several more accolades. For the fourth consecutive season, the Express would win the OCCAC conference title with a 13-1 mark in conference play, the lone blemish coming against Sinclair. The Express would win the Region XII District I title once again, when the team defeated Sinclair 73-64, which qualified them for another national tournament appearance. Owens would finish in the Top 10 of Division II at the NJCAA level once again. The team broke a long standing record with the largest margin of victory against Hocking College on 2/10/18 with a 101 point margin. The team also had two members named to the WBCA All-American squad and freshman Dai'Shona Polk was named a NJCAA All-American as well.
In 2016-17, the team finished 31-1 after completing a 30-0 regular season. For the third straight season, the team completed an undefeated run to a conference championship before seeing its season end in the Region XII District I championship game. Following the season, Jeryn Reese was named the program's first back-to-back OCCAC player of the year, and Ariel Bethea became the inaugural OCCAC defensive player of the year while breaking the program's single season and career steal records. On top of that, the team broke the record for most PPG and fewest PPG allowed in a single season while also shattering several other program records.
In 2015-16, Perry helped guide Owens to a 29-7 record overall and a second straight 14-0 conference championship season despite losing the top six scorers from the prior season. The team produced a 17 game winning streak, scored 100 or more points a record nine times, won its fourth straight conference championship, captured its second straight Region XII District I championship and finished fifth at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. The team averaged 81.0 points per game, but did so in a balanced effort as six players averaged in double figures. Furthermore, a pair of freshmen, Jeryn Reese and Aysah Ingram, each averaged a double-double, while Reese garnered a slew of awards including NJCAA Second Team All-American recognition. One sophomore, Lakyn Gulley, broke four program records before signing with NCAA Division I Southeast Missouri State University. Sophomore point guard Briana Williams became the program's all-time career assists leader.
In 2014-15, Perry helped lead Owens to its best season in program history led by a strong freshman guard class mixed in with an outstanding sophomore class that produced 85 points per game, while holding opponents to just 60.9 per contest. They finished 34-2 overall and 14-0 in OCCAC play, while capturing a college record 33 straight wins, the program's first undefeated conference season, its third straight OCCAC title, its second Region XII District I championship in three years and a third place finish at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. The team's two losses was its lowest single season loss total in program history. Following the season, six players signed with four-year schools led by NCAA Division I signees Sierra Harley, who was named an NJCAA First Team All-American, and Ashley Tunstall. Those two players combined for 29.8 points per game, while Demy Whitaker averaged 10.3 points per contest as a freshman.
In 2013-14, Perry helped Owens to a 26-3 overall record, including a then program record tying 18 straight wins. Their three losses also tied the 1996-97 team for fewest losses in a single season until the 2014-15 team upended the mark. The program won its second straight OCCAC championship and its third over the previous four years. The season came to an end in the district championship game, just one step away from a return trip to the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. Sophomore point guard Kamilah Carter had one of the best seasons in program history by averaging 19.3 points per game.
The 2012-13 team finished 28-8 overall, 10-2 in OCCAC play (1st Place), won the Region XII District I championship and finished seventh at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament.
During the 2010-11 season, while head coach Michael Llanas was attending to the birth of his child, Perry stepped in as head coach and helped lead Owens to an upset of No. 2 Schoolcraft College and Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
Perry joined the program with nine years of basketball coaching experience, with the final eight of those at St. Ursula Academy in Toledo, OH.
During his time there, Perry served as St. Ursula Academy's freshman and JV girls head basketball coach. His teams amassed an overall record of 127-29, won two City League championships and finished City League runner-up three times.
Perry is a graduate of Toledo St. John's Jesuit High School and went on to play intercollegiate basketball at Tiffin University. He is an Account Executive for USF Holland in Bowling Green. He and his, wife, Susan, reside in Toledo and have two daughters, Madeline and Lauren.