Courtney Hendrickson will don some familiar school colors next fall when she joins the Missouri State University-West Plains Grizzly volleyball bench as the team's new assistant volleyball coach.
Hendrickson, who played outside attacker for the Grizzlies during the 2004 and 2005 seasons, began her new coaching duties on April 2. Her hiring is pending approval of the Missouri State University Board of Governors. University officials said she will be paid at the assistant coaches rate of $31,500 for the remainder of the current fiscal year.
"I'm excited to be back in West Plains," said Hendrickson, a native of Florissant, Mo. "The opportunity to work with Paula again was very appealing. She was one of the best coaches I've ever had as a player. I can only imagine what she will do to help me as a coach."
"I'm thrilled to have her back," Lady Grizzly Head Coach Paula Wiedemann said. "She knows this program and understands the winning tradition we have here, and she understands the type of players we need to continue to be successful. When I think about past players who define what being a Grizzly is all about, she's one of those at the top of the list. She really helped carry the team her sophomore season in 2005 with her enthusiasm and leadership."
An all-state honoree from St. Louis Incarnate Word Academy who helped lead her team to a Class 4A state championship in 2003, Hendrickson was a key component to the Grizzlies' success in 2004 and 2005. She helped guide the Grizzlies to two Region 16 championships and seventh and third place finishes at the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division I Women's Volleyball Championship Tournament those two seasons, while earning second-team All-Region 16 honors her freshman year and first-team All-Region 16 and second-team NJCAA All-American honors her sophomore year.
She graduated from Missouri State-West Plains in 2006 with an Associate of Arts in General Studies degree and transferred to Drury University in Springfield where she played for the Lady Panthers during the 2006 and 2007 seasons. While at Drury, she received first-team All-Great Lakes Valley Conference honors her senior year after leading the Panthers with 494 kills -- the second highest single-season total in school history -- and 542 points. She also finished second on the squad in 2007 in digs with 410. She ranked second in kills and third in points per game in the GLVC as a senior. She finished her two-year career as a Panther with 978 kills -- 11th highest total in the program's history.
Hendrickson received a Bachelor of Arts in Exercise and Sports Science degree from Drury in August 2008 and served as assistant coach of the Lady Panthers during the 2008 season, helping guide the team to 12-18 record.
"The nice thing about having Courtney back as an assistant coach is that we know what to expect from each other, and she knows what to expect out of our players," Wiedemann said. "She's young, but she has a great sense of the game, and she has a drive and a determination to be successful."