Amber Weaver

The start of the 2017 volleyball program is still five months away, but new head coach Amber Weaver is already hard at work looking to add to the roster and put her on stamp on the Lady Bobcats’ program.

Weaver was recently tabbed to take over the Georgia Northwestern program following the resignation of Carrie Powell, who stepped down after the 2016 season for family reasons. Weaver served as an assistant coach with the program last year and also served as an assistant with the Lady Bobcats basketball team under head coach David Stephenson.

“I’m super excited about taking over volleyball,” she said. “I’m excited for the upcoming season and the new recruits coming in. It’s just a really great opportunity to work with a really great group of people that I’ve gotten to know from being the assistant basketball coach.”

“We’re going to use the same sort of philosophy as Coach (Stephenson),” added Weaver, who played at Silverdale Baptist Academy. “We want to use (volleyball) to get our players to their next place in life.

“I feel like volleyball is great, but it’s also a great way to get students to continue their education. That’s what it was for me. As long as I could play sports, I had a reason to keep that grade point average (up). I also think it’s a great avenue for (players) to better themselves as people by learning things like being on time and being reliable to a coach, which will transition over to work one day.”

Stephenson, who coached Weaver in high school, said he was thrilled with the hire.

“We’re getting someone who is familiar with our program here, not just volleyball, but the entire athletic department,” he said. “And she understands what we’re trying to do philosophy-wise. We’re getting someone with good experience and someone with connections in the Chattanooga market, which we really want to tap into more.

“She’s very excited about continuing the good work that Coach Powell started and trying to build on it. I’m super excited we’re getting someone of Amber’s quality.”

Powell, a graduate of Ridgeland High School, was a member of the college’s first volleyball team back in 2008. She later became its head coach in 2012.

“Carrie was an outstanding person for our program and I hate to lose her,” Stephenson added. “One of the things that’s written in my office is ‘love your sport, love your kids and love your school’ and Carrie certainly did all three things for us. We wish her nothing but the best because we wouldn’t be where we are now without her.”