WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - Saturday morning, Midwestern State University announced that it had hired former Vernon College head coach Valerie Armstrong to lead the Mustang volleyball program.
Armstrong is currently in Vietnam along with Team USA serving as assistant coach at the Binh Dien Volleyball Cup, and is expected to be in town around the beginning of June.
Newschannel 6 Sports Director Adam Ostrow caught up with MSU Athletic Director Kyle Williams Monday to discuss the choice of Armstrong. Click on the video players above to hear from him!
Here is the official release from MSU Athletic Communications:
Valerie Armstrong led a resurgence at Vernon College in her last foray to North Texas.
Armstrong will be charged to accomplish the task once again at Midwestern State as she was named the ninth coach in program's 31-year history.
"Valerie brings a great passion and knowledge of the game of volleyball," MSU Athletic Director Kyle Williams said. "Her leadership and vast experience in coaching at various levels resulted in success for her student-athletes both on and off the floor. We look forward to welcoming her to the Midwestern State family."
Armstrong takes charge of a program that has improved from six wins in 2015 to 12 in 2016 to 15 last fall.
Overall, the Mustangs qualified for Lone Star Conference postseason play twice in the last six seasons and produced six winning ledgers since joining NCAA Division II in 1997.
"I am honored to be chosen as the next head coach at Midwestern State University," Armstrong said. "MSU is special place, and I think this is a great time for volleyball and athletics. I would like to thank Kyle Williams for giving me this exciting opportunity. I look forward to assisting in the development of this new group of young women academically and athletically to position our program at the top of the Lone Star Conference."
Armstrong was chosen to serve as an assistant to Joe Trinsey (USA coach at World University Games '17 and assistant in the Rio Olympics) for the USA side in the Binh Dien Volleyball Cup this month in Tarny Ky, Vietnam. The tournament boasts professional and national teams from around the world.
Armstrong constructed a successful program at Vernon College where she served as head coach for four seasons from 2009-12. The Chaps improved from 7 wins to 13 to 17 before producing one of the program's top campaigns in 2012 posting a 32-7 mark as NJCAA Region V runners-up ending the year ranked 15th nationally.
Armstrong accepted an assistant's position at Alabama State in 2013. The Hornets produced a program record 25 wins sweeping eight matches in the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) to earn their first NCAA Division I tournament bid.
Armstrong spent the last four seasons as the top assistant for Glenn Kiriyama at Binghamton (N.Y.). The Bearcats advanced to America East postseason play in each of her four seasons on staff reaching the finals last fall.
Armstrong began her coaching career as an assistant at NAIA University of the Southwest in Hobbs, N.M. in 2007 before taking her first head coaching job at Colby (Kan.) Community College in 2008.
Armstrong completed her collegiate playing career as a two-year standout at Oklahoma Panhandle State where she earned OPSU Female Athlete of the Year honors after leading the Aggies with 2.50 kills and 0.47 blocks per set as a senior in 2006. She also earned Heartland Conference All-Academic honors.
Armstrong also played two seasons at Eastern Wyoming College where garnered national all-academic honors.
A native of Brule, Neb., she received her master's degree from Concordia-Irvine (Calif.) in coaching and athletics administration in 2012. She earned her bachelor's degree in agriculture business from Oklahoma Panhandle State in 2007 and an associate's degree from Eastern Wyoming in 2005.