JACKSON, Tenn. - 10/3/2007 - The Union University volleyball team posted the 300th victory in the history of the program on Tuesday night with a win over NCAA DIII Rhodes College (Tenn.). With the win, Union moves to 11-3 on the season.
Currently, midway through their 10th varsity season, Union has posted a 300-93 (.763) record.
Union started volleyball in 1998 and in just the nine-plus years, the program has reached great milestones. Union has captured three TranSouth regular season titles (1999, 2000, 2004) and two TranSouth Tournament titles (1999, 2004). The program has appeared in eight NAIA Region XI Tournaments in the first nine years, including a region title in 2004. In 2004, Union also advanced to their first and only NAIA Volleyball National Tournament. In 2003, Union captured the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) National Title.
Over the past nine years, Union has posted winning records in each year, including 40 or more wins twice. The Union volleyball program has posted an average of over 30 wins per year. (Year-by-Year Records)
Union has had just two coaches over the first 10 years of the program. Current head coach Steven Gream says, “Since starting the program in 1998, Union has been blessed with good players who have helped the program get to where it is today. Coach (Brian) Dunn started the program with a great balance of players that brought a first year program automatically into conference contention.” Before graduating from Union in 2002, Gream served with Coach Dunn as a student assistant for the volleyball team. “I was fortunate enough to be asked to help those first years and I learned much from him (Dunn) during that time”, states Gream.
Brian Dunn was the program’s first coach and led the program for seven years (1998-2004). Dunn, currently coaching at the University School of Jackson, posted a record of 243-62 (.797) over his time at Union.
Union Athletic Director, Dr. David Blackstock comments about the Union volleyball program. “We are very excited about the things that our volleyball program has accomplished. Starting with the great foundation and national prominence that Coach Dunn brought to the program. Now Coach Gream is continuing the winning tradition. We are proud of the job that our coaches and athletes have done to make Union volleyball successful.”
Gream is in his third season as head coach and has accumulated a 57-31 (.648) record in his two and one-half seasons. Gream adds, “A key part of our success is the support we have from Coach Blackstock, the Union administration, and the growth in support and popularity of volleyball in the West Tennessee area. Crowds are getting bigger and participation by players almost year round has brought an interest and a higher level of play to the area. It is a joy to have a chance to recruit local talent which has come a long way from when the program first started in 1998. Players such as Amanda Hutchison Coyle (Trinity Christian Academy), have been a joy to watch over her career. She and others will have opened doors to other young volleyball players and have encouraged them to take advantage of volleyball at the college level.”
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