Eastern Mennonite University has announced the hiring of Danielle Lickey as the new Head Men's Volleyball Coach.
With coaching experience on many different levels, she most recently was the assistant women's coach at D-II University of Charleston (W.V.).
Lickey said she is excited to strengthen the standard of excellence already in the EMU program.
"I would like to thank Dave King, Jim Smucker and the Search Committee for this wonderful opportunity," she said. "I am excited about the mission and values of the university and its direction moving forward. I am grateful for the strong foundation in the men's program laid by the previous coaches and staff and look forward to developing those strengths further. Between the atmosphere on campus, the potential of the men's volleyball program, and the Shenandoah Valley area as a whole, EMU feels like a place I can call home."
King, EMU's Director of Athletics, led the recent nationwide search to fill the position.
"I am excited to have Danielle join our coaching staff and provide leadership to the men's volleyball program," explained King. "And I am grateful for the job that Ross Madden did as interim coach for the 2017 season starting his role on the first day of the season. I believe Danielle will be able to step right in and take a very solid returning team to levels of greater consistency and achievement. Her background in education and experience in playing and coaching at the collegiate level make her well suited for the head coaching role."
After a playing career at the University of Charleston, Lickey was the junior varsity boy's volleyball coach at traditional powerhouse Deep Run High School in Glen Allen, Va. She later returned to her alma mater and earned a master's degree in strategic leadership.
She has extensive coaching experience with both boy's and girl's teams through the Richmond Volleyball Club.
Of the 13 players on the Royals' roster last season, seven were from the Richmond area.
"Being from Richmond, I do have familiarity with several of the players on EMU's team," Lickey explained. "I am extremely excited to have the opportunity to work with them at a collegiate level; furthermore, as a new coach, I am fortunate to have a base of players familiar with my coaching style to help ease the transition between coaches."
King said that familiarity would also help in recruiting.
"Having coached many levels in the Richmond Volleyball Club, Danielle is very familiar with the club circuit, coaches and players which will be a help in the recruiting process," said King. "I believe her passion for men's volleyball will result in the continued growth of our program and am looking forward to years of continued success. She has coached several of the current players and has been a follower of EMU men's volleyball for several years, so she is familiar with EMU and I believe will be a good fit for our program and the university."
Lickey inherits a team full of weapons coming off a 22-11 season, which tied the program record for wins. William Ragland (North Chesterfield, Va./Thomas Dale) and Micah Buller (Richmond, Va./Douglas Freeman) were named to the All-Continental Volleyball Conference Team, while Josh Elmore (Chester, Va./Matoaca) was tabbed at the CVC Freshman of the Year. Setter Christian Taylor (Richmond, Va./Deep Run) finished second in D-III in total assists and Dan Lutz (Greencastle, Pa./Greencastle-Antrim) was second nationally in blocking.
The Royals graduated only one senior after dropping a five-set thriller in the CVC Championship match.
Lickey becomes Eastern Mennonite's 10th coach since the inception of the men's program in 1991.
"I am committed to develop an autonomous, fearless, and intellectual level of play on the court, along with student athletes committed to academics and community," she said. "I believe in developing the whole player, physically, emotionally, and mentally, to prepare athletes to live and play proactively, with respect and confidence. I look forward to connecting with the community and representing EMU while continuing to grow with high character, quality, and competitive student athletes."
Lickey begins her duties July 1.
STORY COURTESY OF EASTERN MENNONITE UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION