Southern athletics names Rachel Kirkman as interim head volleyball coach

Joplin, Mo. – Missouri Southern director of athletics Jared Bruggeman has announced that Rachel Kirkman will serve as the interim head volleyball coach for the 2013 season. A search for Kirkman's replacement as assistant coach will commence immediately.

"I'm happy to bring in someone with a familiarity to the program and this team," Bruggeman said. "Rachel is an excellent coach and her knowledge and experience with our team will be a great asset. I am excited to see her begin her collegiate head coaching career."

Kirkman served as an assistant coach last season for the Lions. A 2008 graduate of Evangel University in Springfield, Kirkman was a four-year starter at setter, playing her freshman season at William Woods, before transferring to Evangel.

While at Evangel, she was a three-time Academic All-American. After graduation, Kirkman spent a season as the 6th-8th grade volleyball coach at Raymondville Middle School, and then moved on to be the head varsity coach at Eldon High School the season after that.

"I'm excited and very grateful for the opportunity to be able to lead this team in the 2013 season," Kirkman said. "As the assistant coach last year, I was able to build a strong relationship with the team and I know the potential that is there. I've stayed in touch with the girls over the summer and I know they have been working hard in preparing for this upcoming season."

"Last season we were young, with up to five freshmen on the floor at a time. However, this helped us gain some experience and with a strong group of returners, paired with four very talented additions, we are looking forward to and have high hopes for this season."

The Lions will begin the 2013 season at the Pittsburg State Invitational on September 6th and 7th.