By Theresa Morrissey, Assistant Sports editor
LIU has added Men’s Volleyball to their athletics program. The team is the newest addition to the campus’ roster of 34 sports.
Athletic Director Dr. William Martinov is excited about the newest addition to LIU Athletics.
“We’re excited about our new men’s volleyball program. The sport provides a fast pace, intense energy and matches up well with our perennially successful women’s program,” he said. “Our head coach, Shawn Patchell, is a great coach and recruiter and will build a program based on high academic and athletic standards.”
Martinov claims he was looking for the best when finalizing the process to get this team going.
“We always consider the sports landscape in terms of national interest, resources, and the ability to be competitive within our region and conference. Men’s volleyball has a great interest across the country and around the world,” he said. “Our ability to recruit exceptional student-athletes and be highly competitive were foremost in our consideration and decision.”
Men’s Volleyball’s inaugural coach, Shawn Patchell, has a history of success with prior coaching at Division I and II levels. Most recently, Patchell coached Concordia University Irvine for eight seasons, where he aided the program’s move from NAIA to NCAA Division II.
Coach Patchell holds a 230-145-1 record as an NCAA coach. Additionally, Patchell brings USA Volleyball expertise as he coached the Men’s National Team to the 2012 Pan American Games, where they won the gold medal. In regards to the inaugural season, Patchell stressed the importance of improving every day.
“My expectation is to have learning opportunities and get better every day in practice and to compete at the DI level,” he said.
Patchell has a strong schedule compiled full of future NEC rivals and even included a trip to Hawaii for the team.
“One of the highlights of the season will be traveling to Hawaii to play two matches with the 2021 NCAA National Champions. UH is excited about the growth of Men’s Volleyball and our new program and is always a gracious host. It will be a great experience for our student-athletes to compete on TV and in front of more than 10k fans on another island!”
Patchell believes every one of his players will make an impact this year.
“In our inaugural season, all 15 players will make a key difference. Volleyball is all about team chemistry, and we have a group of young men that are great teammates,” he said.