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Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer named women’s volleyball head coach

LBSU alumna becomes the fifth head coach of the women’s volleyball program.

Via Long Beach State Athletics

Via Long Beach State Athletics

Christian Gonzales, Sports Editor

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After the unexpected news of former head coach Brian Gimmillaro announcing his retirement earlier this month, LBSU Athletic Director Andy Fee was seeking to fill the vacant spot. In a couple of weeks, Fee found what he was looking for.

On Monday, Fee announced the hiring of Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer as the head coach of the women’s volleyball program. McKienzie-Fuerbringer was an All-American setter for the 49ers, helping the program to its second national championship in 1993.

“We are delighted to name Joy as our head coach,” Fee said in the press release. “During the hiring process, we sought input from a wide spectrum of the volleyball community along with our women’s volleyball alumni, and we consistently saw how highly Joy is regarded, both at the collegiate level and beyond. Joy understands the values and mission of our department and university.”

With over 20 years of coaching experience under her belt, including assistant coaching positions at CSULB and UCLA, McKienzie-Fuerbringer will be just the fifth head coach in the program’s 52-year career.

She returns to LBSU as head coach after spending two years as an assistant back in 1999-2001, when she helped the team make a Final Four appearance in her first year. She then spent four years as an assistant at UCLA from 2010-2014, helping the Bruins win a National Championship in 2011.

“I am thrilled and honored to be coming back home to my alma mater,” McKienzie-Fuerbringer said in the press release. “This is a dream job and I am grateful for the opportunity to represent our proud university and be a part of the great Long Beach State volleyball tradition and its supportive community.”

By her side, McKienzie-Fuerbringer will have her husband, Matt Fuerbringer, on the coaching staff. Fuerbringer was an indoor player at Stanford University, where he was a four-time All-American from 1994-97. In his senior year, he won a National Championship with the Cardinal.

Last season the team finished with a 21-10 record placing second in the Big West Conference (13-3).

With four names in former head coach Gimmillaro’s recruiting class for the 2017 season, it will be interesting how McKienzie-Fuerbringer connects with the new team.

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