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Goddard hires new volleyball coach

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Goddard volleyball has hired Dewayne Roberts as its new volleyball coach. (Sul Ross Athletic Communications Photo)

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Goddard volleyball players and their parents got a chance to meet and greet their new volleyball coach on Tuesday night. The Goddard search committee selected Dwayne Roberts who has worked for New Mexico Military Institute as an athletic academic advisor and assistant soccer coach. Roberts was hired before Memorial Day and it just became official recently.

Roberts has a lot of college coaching experience having served as the Sul Ross State University head volleyball coach in Alpine, Texas, for three seasons, from December 2013 to December 2016. Before that, he served six seasons as a volleyball coach from August 2008 to December 2013.

After sitting out and rejuvenating his batteries, Roberts felt the call to come back to the sidelines.

“I missed being around the game,” Roberts said. “I missed volleyball, the practices, games and all that goes into coaching. Being a coach is who I am.”

Roberts knows he has big shoes to fill and guarantees that he’s not trying to reinvent the wheel as a coach. Roberts will try to get Goddard over the top and win a state title. In the last two seasons, the Lady Rockets have played in the state title game and were up 2-0 on St. Pius X this season before losing three straight sets. Roberts hopes with his experience and the talent the Lady Rockets bring back will be enough to get them to the next level and win a blue trophy.

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“On offense I want us to play fast,” Roberts said. “I would like to have everything based around the middle blocker and attack from the outside set and in the middle. On defense, the key to winning games is to pass the ball well and serve well and make sure our perimeter defense is sound.”

Roberts’ chief priority is that he wants to make sure his team is fundamentally sound. Roberts grew up around the game. His mother Valerie Roberts was an assistant coach for Clovis Christian School and when the Goddard job opened up, it fulfilled one of his goals of getting back closer to home. Roberts received his B.S. in History (2008) and M.S. in Physical Education (2011) from Eastern New Mexico University.

As a former head coach of the Division III program in Sul Ross and an assistant coach at Division II Eastern New Mexico University for seven seasons, Roberts doesn’t believe there is much difference in talent. As a coach, he knows what it takes for kids to be able to play at either level and with his coaching experience and contacts, he believes that he can help the young ladies on his team play at the next level if they choose to do so.

“I missed the game so much,” Roberts said. “It never leaves your blood. I want our kids to be dedicated to the team first mentality, and dedicate themselves to unselfish play. Everyone on the team has a role — put the team first and good things will happen.”

Goddard will start practice on July 9. The Lady Rockets will have a team camp at New Mexico State University on July 13-15.

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