Melissa Starck begins her first year as assistant volleyball coach at the University of Louisville.
She comes home to Louisville after serving last year as an assistant with the Saint Louis University volleyball staff.
"Melissa is young, enthusiastic and energetic," says U of L head coach Leonid Yelin. "She has local ties as an Assumption and a Western Kentucky graduate. She loves the game of volleyball and she loves her hometown so this is a great match for her and a great match for us."
A native of Louisville, Starck joined the SLU volleyball coaching staff in February of 2004. Mentored by head coach Anne Kordes, a former setter for the U of L program, Starck helped take the Billikens to a 15-17 finish and a seventh place standing in the league. As part of SLU's rebuilding efforts, Starck coached outside hitter Aida Antanaviciute who was named honorable mention All-America by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) and was the first Billiken volleyball player to earn All-America status in the program's history. Earlier this year, Antanaviciute was selected first-team All-Midwest Region and first-team All-Conference USA.
"I think she will relate well with our young kids. She is hard-working, fiery and a good role model for our players," says Yelin.
Prior to that stint, Starck was the top assistant at Jacksonville State University for the 2003 and 2004 seasons for head coach Rick Nold, a former U of L volleyball assistant coach.
Starck has been the recruiting coordinator for Jacksonville State and has been a part of two Sun Belt Conference East Division titles. In 2003, JSU finished with a record of 23-7 overall, 12-4 in the Ohio Valley Conference.
Prior to JSU, Starck was the assistant coach for the U-14 team at the Kentucky-Indiana Volleyball Academy and the Teams in Training 12's head coach. She also was a coach and camp instructor for nine years at the Ohio Valley Volleyball Center.
Starck was a standout hitter at Western Kentucky and is WKU's career leader in matches played. As a senior, she helped WKU to a 25-8 record, and the Hilltoppers had two seasons with 25 or more victories during her playing career. Starck was named WKU's Female Senior Athlete of the Year in 2001 and was nominated for the Golden Key Honor Society. She is the school's leader in service aces with 176, ranks second all-time at WKU in digs with 1,510 digs and finished with 1,265 career kills.
Starck was named a Sun Belt Conference Scholar-Athlete for four consecutive years, and she was a member of the Dean's List every semester at Western Kentucky. Starck earned a Bachelor of Science degree in special education, learning and behavioral disorders in 2001 from WKU.
Starck was an honorable mention All-American player at Assumption High School. She served the 2001 season as the head coach for the junior varsity team and assistant for the freshman team.