Fernanda Frey got something when she took over as head coach of the Northwestern volleyball program that most coaches don’t get.
She got to start from scratch.
Northwestern is reinstating its volleyball program that has been in hibernation for decades and Fernanda Frey has been charged with its revival. Frey stepped in as the head coach in January and has been building every area from the bottom up – starting with the roster itself.
And there will be a full complement of players in this first season with a lot of youth.
“We have 24 girls,” Frey said. “I’m going to have a lot of freshmen. There are only three juniors and a senior, so yes, most of our players are young.”
This will mean that Frey will get to spend much time with those young players through their careers and will have a real chance to install her volleyball philosophy to them.
But she hasn’t had much time to get to know this team just yet.
“I’m ready to get them her and just get everybody together,” Frey said. “I had a few tryouts earlier so I got to see a few of the girls here. But it’s just so hard to tell what we’re going to look like until we get everyone together here. They haven’t played with each other yet and we are looking to see how it will work out.
And although there aren’t many upperclassmen, Frey is looking forward to the arrival of them in the fall and she is “expecting the juniors to have some leadership and show the freshmen how we want them to do it.”
NWOSU even held an open tryout in February to fill spots on the team and one of the freshmen got the nod.
“Natalie Malone had played volleyball her whole life,” Frey said. “But when she wanted to go to college, she chose Northwestern for the academics. Now that we have volleyball here, she’s really excited. And she is one of the girls that will be with us.”
The Lady Rangers will be playing in Percefull Fieldhouse and will host Southwestern in their first home game on Sept. 11, at 7 p.m. And Frey said that there is already an excitement on the campus for the program.
“I have people come up to me all the time and tell me how excited they are to have volleyball back at the school,” Frey said. “We just hope that everyone will be able to come out and watch us.”
Frey wants to build the program to be a strong one, but also wants to be a steady growth.
“My first goal is just to be competitive,” Frey said. “We want to work hard and definitely to be competitive in our conference.
“We’ll just see how it goes.”
Northwestern opens the 2012 season at the Pittsburg State Classic on Aug. 31.