WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - We sat down Monday afternoon with UNCW Volleyball head coach Amy Bambenek, after the Seahawks finished one of the most memorable seasons in school history.
AJ: "Coach one of the most remarkable seasons in school history. It wasn't that long ago the season ended, have you had a chance to reflect on what your team was able to accomplish this year?"
Coach Bambenek: "Um, not fully. After the loss at UNC in the first round, it was still a little bit disappointing knowing our season had come to an end, we were able to kind of reflect on some things with our players in end of season meetings right when we got back, but I've still found myself kind of looking back at highlights of the conference tournament and from this past season, to help me kind of remember what we did accomplish this past year."
AJ: "State of the program. This team, UNCW Volleyball, didn't have a twenty win season in their history, now they have back to back to back twenty win seasons and a lot of that is due to what you and the coaching staff have done, you have a program now here, how hard was that to develop?"
Coach Bambenek: "It is not an easy journey, and anyone that says it's an easy journey is lying. Certainly when I first took over as a head coach in 2009, I felt that it'd be a little bit quicker of a turnaround, that we could get things moving quicker and we did compete right away, we weren't losing in three sets anymore, we were being more competitive we were taking teams to five, we were winning more conference games, but really these last three, winning can be contagious, just as much as losing can be contagious, so it took a while for us to get out of that losing mode, and once we started winning, we like that feeling a lot more, so the girls were willing to fight for it a little bit more."
AJ: "Is there any point you can remember in your coaching, club, or high school career, a most embarrassing moment for you, at the start of your coaching career, where you thought, wow what am I doing?"
Coach Bambenek: "Most embarrassing moment? Hmm. I can recall some scary moments, I can recall some fun moments. I had basically said, ok, if I see that again, if someone doesn't go after the ball again, then we're going to have a consequence, AJ's going to go on a run with you guys around campus and you don't know when you get to come back, and this was already per-established what we were going to do, so of course it happened, ball hit the ground, so AJ took them on a run, maybe just half a block, and then he turned into Cookout. And he said ok we're all getting milkshakes, and all the girls freaked out they said what are you doing! Coach is gonna be so mad! We can't stop for milkshakes we've got to keep running! And he was like no no no no, we planned this. It's ok, we wanted to give you guys a half day off, there's just been stuff like that where I know those group of girls are always going to remember."
AJ: "You've got to tell me next time you're going to Cookout...Coach final question, when you look back on this season, what will you remember the most about 2015 Seahawk Volleyball?"
Coach Bambenek: "You know we absolutely achieved all the goals that we set out to when AJ and I took this position, that gives me a lot of pride, and makes me feel like I"m in the right place doing the right thing, I'm a college coach for a reason, and it's because all of the success the program was able to accomplish, really putting in all that work, and seeing all your efforts, do what they're supposed to."