Former Stevens libero named interim head coach for St. Francis Brooklyn

Photo courtesy of Stevens athletics

Not even one match into its program history and St. Francis Brooklyn is already onto its second head coach.

The Terriers announced earlier this month that Niko Lambert will serve as the interim head coach for the newest NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball team.

“Niko has a great passion for the game of volleyball and brings a tremendous work ethic to our men’s volleyball program,” athletics director Irma Garcia said in a statement. “We look forward to him guiding our men’s team in their inaugural season.”

Lambert replaces former head coach Andy Mueller as St. Francis Brooklyn prepares for its inaugural season that begins in less than three months.

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Mueller was named the team’s head coach when the school unveiled last year that it would add a men’s volleyball program. However, Mueller opted to leave St. Francis Brooklyn earlier this fall to become an assistant coach with the Long Island University women’s volleyball team.

Lambert initially arrived to St. Francis Brooklyn in August to be an assistant coach for the women’s volleyball after concluding his college career at Stevens.

In four seasons with the Ducks, Lambert had 453 career digs and helped the team qualify to the NCAA Tournament each season. The libero in the 2018 NCAA Tournament semifinals also had eight digs as Stevens defeated Dominican in five games to reach the championship match.

Lambert along with coaching St. Francis Brooklyn is currently pursuing a master’s degree in engineering. In addition, Lambert will be the youngest head coach in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball next season.

“I am extremely excited for Niko as he takes on this new role,” Amable Martinez, director of volleyball and women’s volleyball head coach, said in a statement “He has done an excellent job assisting the women’s volleyball program this season. He has great energy, a high volleyball IQ, and loves to teach the game, which are all great qualities to be a coach. Niko has great experience and knows what it takes to be successful in the men’s game from his playing days. His experience as a former student-athlete can be valuable for our men’s volleyball program.”

St. Francis Brooklyn will compete its inaugural season as an independent without a conference affiliation. The Terriers have yet to release their 2020 schedule.