EASLEY — Easley High School introduced its new volleyball coach April 10 to an excited gathering of players and parents, naming Jessica Hamby as the new head of the school’s program.
Athletics Director Gil Payne, in his first semester leading the Green Wave, announced his first hire with parents and players waiting with anticipation, and according to Payne, Hamby’s history of success should be a good fit for the program moving forward.
“Jessica’s been involved with winning programs everywhere she’s been, whether as a player or coach,” he said. “It’s not often you get a coach who’s played for a state championship, in the national tournament in college, and coached a team to the state finals.”
Hamby, serving as an elementary teacher at Oconee Christian Academy and coach of the school’s volleyball team, which took third place in the state in 2013, was a member of the Southern Wesleyan University volleyball team from 2006-2009, playing in the NAIA national tournament.
Hamby will get a look at her new squad during spring workouts.
“The first thing I have to do is assess where we are as a team and what needs to be put into place as a team,” Hamby said following her introduction as head coach. “I do know one of the things we will be learning as a team is how to win, not only playing hard but playing smart, finding the other team’s weaknesses and using them against them.”
As for the chance to take over the program at the level the Green Wave participates, Hamby is excited.
“It’s a real opportunity and a big leap for me,” she said. “Easley High School has great facilities and a great tradition. I’m just glad to have the chance to come in and be a part of it.”
Hamby was quite clear on one aspect of her coaching philosophy.
“We’re going to work hard every practice and off-season,” Hamby said. “The one thing I want to teach these players is that the best things never come easy.”