A former professional player from the European Volleyball League will take over a program that has won back-to-back Conference Carolinas championships.
Pfeiffer after almost a month-long nationwide search announced Monday that it hired Paul Lawson to be its new men’s volleyball coach head coach.
This will be Lawson’s first head coaching position at a NCAA Division I-II school, but he has more than a decade of coaching experience at the NAIA and high school club level.
“We are very excited to have the opportunity to bring on Paul and his experience with both the men’s and women’s side of the game,” Pfeiffer athletics director Bob Reasso said in a statement released Monday. “I have every confidence that he will continue to lead our already successful programs to new heights.”
Lawson spent four years as the head coach at Marycrest International and led the team to the 2001 NAIA National Tournament Championship. He also coached the University of Saint Mary women’s volleyball team from 2003-10.
Before arriving to Pfeiffer, the coach during the last three years worked with the Energy Volleyball Club and coached the Alverno College women’s volleyball team. In addition, Lawson has served as the director of the NAIA National Tournament and chairman of the NAIA national rankings since 2002.
Along with his coaching experience, Lawson played professional volleyball overseas for five years in the European Volleyball League.
Lawson will replace Greg Walker as the Falcons’ head coach. Similar to Walker, Lawson will serve as the head coach for both the men’s and women’s volleyball teams.
“I feel honored for the opportunity to coach at Pfeiffer,” Lawson said in a statement. “I am excited to come in and raise the bar for the women’s program and keep the men’s team playing at a high level.”
Pfeiffer finished the 2013 regular season in second place in the conference and won its second consecutive Conference Carolinas Tournament championship.
As an emerging men’s volleyball conference, the Conference Carolinas becomes eligible for an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament starting next season. In addition, it was announced earlier this summer that the Conference Carolinas champions will have home-court advantage against the EIVA champions for the newly created 2014 NCAA Tournament play-in match.