By BRAD KEITH
STEPHENVILLE (August 16, 2016) — Reigning Lone Star Conference volleyball champ Tarleton State has a new assistant coach working under 12th year head woman Mary Schindler, and she comes with Division I experience.
Katie Hoekman comes to Tarleton after serving as a graduate assistant at TCU. She reached four consecutive Division I Championship tournaments as a middle at San Diego, where she landed 294 kills and posted a .389 hitting percentage as a junior to earn All-Pacific Region honors from the American Volleyball Coaches Association. She finished her San Diego career with 941 kills and 365 blocks, earning three All-West Coast Conference selections.
Hoekman spent two winning seasons at TCU in Fort Worth, where she was also an assistant coach during the school’s inaugural season of beach volleyball. She has a bachelor’s degree in political science from Sa n Diego with a master’s degree in liberal arts from TCU.
Flash Sports Editor Brad Keith met with Hoekman at volleyball media festivities Sunday at Wisdom Gym for a quick Q&A:
BK: How was getting settled into Stephenville?
KH: I moved here in March, started working here in January. Everyone has been very welcoming, and now I have a place in town right next to Coach (Schindler), so it’s very convenient.
BK: What are your thoughts on your first season with a different program?
KH: It’s always exciting to get into a new program and get to know the girls and have them get to know you. We have a lot of new girls so this whole preseason will be fun as we get to know everyone.
BK: What were your initial thoughts of the Tarleton campus when you arrived?
KH: The first time I was on campus I saw the Purple Poo and Coach (Schindler) hadn’t warned me about them yet, so that was really fun. You can just see so many traditions as you walk around campus. I was really impressed.
BK: What is your perception of the program as it comes off its first LSC Championship?
KH: We seem to be at a real exciting point because we’re reigning conference champions but we also lost a lot of seniors. It’s exciting because we want to defend that, but we also have a lot of freshmen and transfers coming in who need to prove themselves.
BK: What’s it like just finally having all the girls here and at practice after the summer months?
KH: I am so excited. Coach (Schindler) and I have been waiting forever for this. It seems like summer lasted way too long and we’re just happy to be back at it.
BK: What’s it like getting to work with (Schindler)?
KH: It’s awesome, she’s so great. She always brings energy and makes everyone excited to go to work. I love coming to work every day and I’m happy to get to work with her.