Covey, Chesapeake team up in volleyball
Skipjacks land hugely successful high school coach for new program
WYE MILLS It’s nine months until the first game, but the Chesapeake College women’s volleyball program has already registered a huge victory.
Chesapeake College announced Tuesday that Jay Covey, who built the Colonel Richardson High School program into a North Bayside powerhouse, will be the Skipjacks’ head women’s volleyball coach. Covey will be re-launching a program that was discontinued by the college in the late 1990s.
"We think the hiring of Jay Covey brings instant credibility to our women’s volleyball program," said Chesapeake College Athletic Director Frank Szymanski. "Jay is a proven winner and he has tremendous connections both with local high school and travel-team programs."
Covey said he is excited about the prospect of bringing back volleyball to Chesapeake College.
"I’m looking forward to starting a new tradition at Chesapeake," said Covey, a four-time Mid-Shore Coach of the Year who led Colonel Richardson to five North Bayside titles and two regional championships in 16 seasons as head coach.
Covey, a 1977 graduate of Colonel Richardson who owns Xpert Xpress, already has experience with building a program from scratch at his alma mater.
Colonel Richardson’s volleyball program, winless the season before his arrival, compiled a 186-113 record during his coaching tenure. Covey produced four Mid-Shore Players of the Year along with 19 first-team and 20 second-team all-Bayside selections.
"I get great satisfaction making a difference in the lives of the athletes that I have the privilege to coach," said Covey, who is married and the father of five children ranging in age from four to 15. "I have always preached positive and winning attitudes, which kids will need in life to succeed."
Covey has also coached youth and adult volleyball, coached both boys’ and girls’ teams in the South Caroline Little League, and played adult volleyball and softball. He has spent a decade sitting on the South Caroline Little League Board, six years on the South Caroline United By Athletics (SCUBA) Board, and three years as treasurer of the Mid-Shore Volleyball Club.
"Jay is very rooted in the community," said Szymanski. "It’s one of the many reasons we think Jay will be perfect in this role."
Szymanski said Covey’s hiring is just the latest step the college has taken to try to upgrade women’s athletics.
"Our softball program (20-10 in 2006) is really flourishing under Melissa Thompson, and Lowell Shaw has taken great strides in women’s basketball (record-tying seven wins last season)," said Szymanski. "Our goal with Jay’s hiring is to try to build a competitive fall women’s program to complement what we are doing in the winter and spring sports seasons."
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