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Sarah Smith
by YSU Sports Information
Thursday, Jan 3, 2013 7:08 pm
Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith, a former head coach at the Division II level, has joined the Youngstown State volleyball program as an assistant coach.

Smith spent the last nine years as the head coach at Division II Shepherd University in Eastern West Virginia. Her tenure at Shepherd was highlighted by a 21-win season in 2009 and her being named the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year. The following year, she was named one of the American Volleyball Coaches Association’s Top 30 Coaches Under 30.

"We are very fortunate to have someone with Sarah's background on our staff," YSU head coach Mark Hardaway said. "Sarah is a very versatile coach with a tremendous amount of experience. With nine years of head coaching experience at the collegiate level, she understands all aspects of running a program. She has solid office skills to go along with her recruiting and coaching skills. Sarah is well thought of within the volleyball community, which is evident by her receiving the prestigious AVCA 30 Under 30 Award. She is very driven, and I am excited to see what she will bring to the program. I know she will make us better."

Smith led the Rams to 129 wins and a 72-61 mark in conference play during her nine years. Sixteen of her players earned all-conference honors, and one went on to earn AVCA All-Region accolades. Off the court, the Rams earned a team GPA over 3.1 eight times, and more than 20 received honors for academic excellence.

Smith was very active off the court. She created what became the Shepherd Women’s Athletic Alliance, which brings all women’s sports teams together for community outreach and fundraising opportunities. She was the Mountain East Volleyball Coaches Chair and was active on the AVCA All-Region and Division II Head Coaches committees.

Prior to taking over at Shepherd, Smith was a graduate assistant at Minnesota State, Mankato for the 2003 and 2004 seasons. Her duties included training middle blockers, scouting opponents and video analysis. In 2003, the Mavericks finished 20-9 and ranked 20th in the country.

Smith had an outstanding career as a student-athlete at Bryant University. As a four-year starter, Smith led the Bulldogs to four NCAA Tournament appearances and an overall record of 116-45. Smith registered 406 kills on a .340 attack percentage her senior year in 2002 as Bryant advanced to the Sweet 16. As of 2014, she still ranked 10th in Bryant history in career kills (1,261), sixth in career aces (276), 11th in career digs (1,364) and 14th in career blocks.

 

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