This is an entry in my volleyball coaching log for the 2021-22 season for the Medaille College women.

Wrapping up the conference

Here’s how the AMCC standings finished the 2021 season – the last one for the Medaille women given the conference change coming in 2022.

By finishing atop the standings, Penn St-Behrend earned the right to host the conference tournament semis and final. They and Alfred State also earned byes for the first round. Thus, Penn St-Altoona hosted Mt. Aloysius in one of the quarterfinals, with Pitt-Bradford hosting La Roche in the other. Both of the higher seeds advanced. Alfred then beat Altoona in one semi, with Behrend beating Bradford in the other, and then winning the final as well.

Behrend took on #5 Calvin in the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Regionals. It was pretty lopsided: 25-10, 25-22, 25-10.

The one other team we played this year that made the NCAAs was RIT. They actually topped their Region and thus hosted. They lost in the semifinals, however.

Voting and more voting!

The first week of the month I had to take part in voting for two levels of individual season awards. The first, of course, was for our conference. I had to nominate for All-Conference and Newcomer of the Year, then vote. It’s always interesting to see who other coaches nominate from their teams, and the order in which they rank those players. Sometimes you disagree. lol

I also voted in the All-Region selection process. This is different than the process I took part in (for both All-Region and All-American) back in the Spring for the men. There I was part of the committee and everything happened in that context. For the women, though, all head coaches in the Region who are AVCA members (the AVCA being the organization that actually awards All-Region and All-American) can vote. The results of that voting then goes to the committee. I’m not part of that committee.

Season honors

Medaille got a player on the All-Conference 2nd Team. That was our Junior OH who was 4th in the league in Kills/Set and 6th in Points/Set. She was also 15th in Aces/Set and was statistically our best passer through conference play. If we had a better record she might have had a shot at 1st Team, but I figured 2nd Team was reasonable under the circumstances.

Not surprisingly based on what I saw in the voting process, our conference didn’t put anyone on the All-Region team for Region VII. A team we played this year put 3 players in the team for Region III, where we go next year. One of them was Player of the Year. Considering they finished the regular season #1 in the Region, according to the NCAA rankings, no surprise there. Two teams from our new conference next year had players at least make Honorable Mention.

Doing my “extra duties”

Part of the job requirements of all full-time coaches at Medaille is that they work as event managers for other sports’ contests when out of season. I’m not out of season very much, given that I coach both women and men, but there are still times. One of those times came up back on the 3rd. The men’s soccer team took 1st in the regular season, so they got a 1st round bye and hosted from there. The 3rd was their semifinal. I got to spend 3+ hours out there dealing with a variety of weather conditions. I think it took me until midway through the next day before my body finally unclenched.

Meetings

I had individual meetings for the returners. Talked a bit about the season past, but focused generally more on “moving forward” topics. Part of that was getting feedback from them – especially the freshmen – on how I set up the schedule for next season.

Recruiting

We had a Middle recruit visit on the 6th from PA. Thanks to Men’s Soccer hosting the conference championship, and the day being quite nice, she got the opportunity to hang out with some of the team there (and at least one of our men’s players).

On the 10th we had an Admissions recruit on campus for a visit to do some shadowing of a current student. She was someone I had on my list, but not someone I was actively recruiting. She’s already committed to Medaille academically. I met with her to talk about the program. Her level of play is sufficiently high that I’m happy to bring her into the team, but we’ll likely have to move her to a new position. She makes it three commits for 2022.

Over this past weekend we had a L/DS prospect visiting from CA. She planned her trip to coincide with an Open House, so that was the focal point of the activities. She and her parents, though, got in early on Friday and used the time to explore the Buffalo area. During the Open House she got to meet with our three freshmen, two of whom are similarly from out west (Calgary and Seattle).

Scheduling

Still working on things for 2022. I’ve been doing a combination of trying to confirm that we’re in for tournaments and looking at opportunities to play midweek matches against teams from relatively close-by. Still have a number of dates to fill.

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John Forman
John Forman

John is currently the Men's & Women's Head Volleyball Coach at Medaille College, as well as Global Director for Volleyball for Nation Academy (formerly Charleston Academy). His previous experience includes the college and university level in the US and UK, professional coaching in Sweden, and both coaching and club management at the Juniors level. Learn more on his bio page.

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