MONMOUTH — Stacy Metro is a builder.
That’s why the new head volleyball coach at Western Oregon University is excited to come in and reinvent the program under her direction.
“I like the challenge of building something and getting it up there,” Metro said, who was hired in December. “And, so, I’m excited — I like the challenge.”
Metro comes to WOU with over 20 years of coaching experience. Her career took off after she graduated from Northern Michigan University, as an assistant at Kansas State University for four years.
“We took that program, that was pretty bad — they hadn’t won a conference match in 10 years — and we were able to turn it around, and got an NCAA tournament championship the second year,” Metro said. “So that was pretty good.”
Most recently, she was helping out with the volleyball team at Churchill High School; prior to that, she was an assistant at University of Oregon for 10 years alongside her husband. She also had stops at Northern Michigan University, Chico State, and University of Texas at Austin.
Coming in as a veteran coach, Metro has big expectations for her team.
“I think the biggest thing is just changing the mentality of what we have for the first season, the mentality of what’s expected in the program,” she said. “Even though we don’t get to coach them during the summer, of the 20 girls that we have on the roster, 17 are here during the summer, and I think that’s a huge commitment that they made, to come in and play and work out and get ready, and this is the first time that they’ve done that, so I think that’s a huge first step for us in changing that mindset, that it’s expected to win, it’s expected to give what it takes to win on the court, just like in the classroom, you have to work hard and you have to put in the effort to see results. If we can just keep building and get better every day, I know it sounds so cliché but it’s true – are you getting better every time you’re touching a ball? I think if we do that we’re going to have some pretty successful results.”
Metro plans to drive her team hard, but it’s because she knows what putting in hard work can result in.
A volleyball player at NMU, she was a 3x All-American, a 2x National Player of the Year, and was named Most Valuable Player of every tournament she took part in.
She keeps pretty quiet about her accomplishments.
“I don’t like to talk about myself,” she said, laughing. “It’s a team effort, it’s not an individual sport. I had incredible teammates in college, so I feel like that should have been their reward too.”
During her collegiate career, Metro and her team lost in the national championship finals at Portland State University; the next year, the team clinched a national championship, beating California State Baker. From there, Metro played with the national team for a few years, and then got into coaching.
Coming to WOU was a way for her to get back to her roots at a DII level.
“When we finished at U of O, I knew my husband was done coaching, but I still felt like I wanted to be involved somewhere,” she said. “When the job opened in December a couple of my players that I coached at Oregon really encouraged me to apply, as well as my husband, and I was like OK I will.
It’s been fun. If it’s not fun, than why am I doing it?”
The Wolves volleyball season opens up Sept. 6 at Metropolitan State at 11:30 a.m.