2006 Tachikara/AVCA Division II Region Coaches of the Year
2006 Tachikara/AVCA Division II Region
Coaches of the Year for Women's Volleyball Announced
Lexington, Ky. - The following coaches have been selected by their region as the 2006 Tachikara/AVCA Division II Regional Coach of the Year. Each of the honorees will represent their region on the 2006 Tachikara/AVCA National Coach of the Year ballot. The awards will be officially presented at the 2006 Tachikara/AVCA Coach of the Year and Victory Club Awards banquet in Omaha, Neb., on Thursday, Dec. 14, at the 2006 American Volleyball Coaches Association Annual Convention.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II Atlantic Region Coach of the Year
Laurie Lokash, Slippery Rock University
2006 Record: 31-9, 6-4 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference
Laurie Lokash led Slippery Rock University to a 31-9 record in 2006, the team's best mark since 1993. Posting a 6-4 record in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC), The Rock qualified for the PSAC tournament for the first time in 12 years. They have been a top team in the region all season long, positioned in the top three in all of the Atlantic Region Rankings published by the NCAA. A No. 3 seed in the Atlantic Region of the NCAA Division II Tournament, Slippery Rock advanced to the second round of this year's event, eventually falling to conference foe, California of Pennsylvania. Now with 467 career wins, Lokash ranks among the top 15 active leaders in Division II. This is the first time she has been named Tachikara/AVCA Division II Atlantic Region Coach of the Year.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II Great Lakes Region Coach of the Year
Connie Surowicz, Ashland University
2006 Record: 23-9, 11-6 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Connie Surowicz has led Ashland University to a 23-9 record and a trip to the NCAA Division II national quarterfinals. Unranked through the first two months of the season, Ashland has caught fire, winning eight of their last nine matches, and 16 of their last 19, including three wins over top 10 teams, beating Hillsdale twice and Grand Valley State. During this stretch, the Eagles won their first-ever Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tournament Championship, as well as the Great Lakes Region Championship of the NCAA Division II Tournament for the first time in school history. Now ranked No. 10 in the CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll, Ashland is set to square off with North Alabama for a shot at the national semifinals on November 16 in Pensacola, Fla. This is the second time that Surowicz has won the Tachikara/AVCA Division II Great Lakes Region Coach of the Year, the other coming in 2004.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II North Central Region Coach of the Year
Jim Boos, University of Minnesota Duluth
2006 Record: 30-3, 12-0 North Central Conference
Jim Boos has led the University of Minnesota Duluth to the NCAA national quarterfinals for the second time in three years. The Bulldogs posted a perfect 12-0 record in the North Central Conference (NCC), the first team to run the table in the NCC since 1991. The league title was the third consecutive for Boos' Bulldogs, in only their third season in the league. Despite losing an AVCA All-American to graduation as season ago, the Bulldogs were ranked in the top 10 of the CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll all season, currently coming in at No. 2. Playing in their fifth consecutive NCAA Division II Tournament, the Bulldogs won the North Central Regional, and advance to square off with UC San Diego Thursday, Nov. 16 in Pensacola, Fla. Boos is now 139-21 in his fifth season at the helm of UMD. This is the second Tachikara/AVCA Division II North Central Region Coach of the Year honor for Boos, the first coming in 2004.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II Northeast Region Coach of the Year
Robin Salters, University of New Haven
2006 Record: 23-14, 8-1 East Coast Conference
Robin Salters led New Haven to a 23-14 record in 2006, including an 8-1 second place finish in the East Coast Conference (ECC); this was an 11-win improvement from their 2005 finish of 12-17. Runners-up in the ECC Tournament as well, the Chargers made the NCAA Division II Tournament after a two-year absence, their 11th NCAA Tournament appearance in Salters' 13 seasons. Though the team returned just six players from a year ago, and their starting setter and libero were freshmen, Salters had New Haven playing as one of the top teams in the region, positioned in the top three in all of the Northeast Region Rankings put out by the NCAA in 2006. Salters is now 374-121 career at New Haven, placing her in the top 20 among active coaches in career victories in Division II. This is the fourth Tachikara/AVCA Division II Northeast Region Coach of the Year award for Salters.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II Pacific Region Coach of the Year
Tom Black, University of California San Diego
2006 Record: 26-2, 18-2 California Collegiate Athletic Association
Tom Black has led the University of California San Diego (UC San Diego) to their first NCAA national quarterfinals appearance since 2001. The second year coach led the Tritons to an 18-2 runner-up finish in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA), second only to Cal State San Bernardino, the team they beat in the Pacific Region finals of the NCAA Division II Tournament. UC San Diego has been ranked in every CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll released this season, positioned currently at No. 4, their highest ranking of the season. Winners of 18 consecutive matches, the Tritons square off with Minnesota Duluth on Thursday, Nov. 16 in Pensacola, Fla. Black now holds a career record of 45-10 at UCSD. This is the first time he has been the recipient of the Tachikara/AVCA Division II Pacific Region Coach of the Year award.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II South Region Coach of the Year
Chris Catanach, University of Tampa
2006 Record: 32-1, 15-1 Sunshine State Conference
Chris Catanach, in his 23rd year at Tampa, guided the Spartans to a share of the 2006 Sunshine State Conference (SSC) Championship, the 16th time that Tampa has won at least a share of the conference title, the SSC record for volleyball. The Spartans have been ranked either No. 1 or No. 2 on every CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll this season except one, currently holding the top spot. Catanach earned career victory number 700 during the season, one of only three active coaches in Division II with that many wins. The Spartans won the South Region of the NCAA Division II Tournament, and make their tenth trip to the national quarterfinals under Catanach, who is seeking his first National Championship. The Spartans will square off with Dowling on Thursday, November 16 in Pensacola, Fla. Catanach is now 718-143 career at Tampa. This is the tenth time he has won the Tachikara/AVCA Division II South Region Coach of the Year honor.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II South Central Region Coach of the Year
Stephanie Radecki, University of North Alabama
2006 Record: 32-5, 12-0 Gulf South Conference
Stephanie Radecki has led her team to 25 consecutive wins and a trip to the NCAA Division II national semifinals. After sharing the Gulf South Conference (GSC) regular season championship, going undefeated at 12-0 and winning all 36 games played, North Alabama won the GSC Tournament. UNA has been ranked in the CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll all season, and currently comes in at their highest rating of No. 6. The Lions upset then-top-ranked Truman in the semi-finals of the South Central Region of the NCAA Division II Tournament, helping propel them to their fifth South Central Region championship. UNA will face Ashland on November 16 in Pensacola, Fla. In her third season at the helm of the Lions, Radecki is now 92-14, and has the highest winning percentage by a coach in school history. This is the second consecutive and second total Tachikara/AVCA Division II South Central Region Coach of the Year honor for Radecki.
Tachikara/AVCA Division II Southwest Region Coach of the Year
Tony Graystone, West Texas A&M University
2006 Record: 33-3, 10-0 Lone Star Conference
Tony Graystone has led West Texas A&M (WTAMU), which features only four upperclassmen and eight freshmen, to a 33-3 record this year heading into the NCAA Division II national quarterfinals. The Lady Buffs went 10-0 in the Lone Star Conference (LSC) regular season, and followed that up with an LSC Tournament win. Unranked at the beginning of the season, WTAMU has now been ranked in over half of the CSTV/AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Polls this season, currently at their highest position of the season, No. 14. The Lady Buffs take a 28-match winning streak into the NCAA Division II national quarterfinals, after winning the Southwest Region; they will square off with Lock Haven on November 16 in Pensacola, Fla. Graystone was the fastest coach to reach 100 wins in NCAA history, achieving that milestone in 2001. This is the third time the Lady Buffs' all-time winningest coach has won the Tachikara/AVCA Division II Southwest Region Coach of the Year honor.