Jeremy Zalacca - Director of Athletic Communications
MISENHEIMER, N.C. – Pfeiffer Vice President for Athletics Bob Reasso has announced the hiring of Melissa Ferris as the head volleyball coach. Ferris comes to Pfeiffer after a head coaching stint at Division I William & Mary and brings nearly 20 years of Division I coaching to Misenheimer.
"We're very fortunate to get a coach of Melissa's stature," commented Reasso. "She is a proven Division I coach and fits the way we are trying to direct our program. We were looking to find a coach with experience guiding a successful volleyball program both academically and athletically and Melissa fits that bill perfectly. We are excited to have her."
"I'd like to thank President Dr. Colleen Perry Keith and VP for Athletics Bob Reasso for this wonderful opportunity," said Ferris. "I am humbled and honored to join the Pfeiffer University family and lead the volleyball program. I am excited to get to know the players and help support them to not only be successful on the court but more importantly, off the court as well. I look forward to being a part of the Pfeiffer community and can't wait to get started."
In her two seasons at William & Mary, Ferris' program had back-to-back CAA All-Rookie selections and she coaches Sydney Biniak to consecutive Third Team All-Conference awards. Additionally, the Tribe was named a recipient of the 2016-17 AVCA Team Academic Award which honors programs that maintain at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average.
Prior to taking over at W & M, Ferris spent 12 seasons as the assistant coach at Rice University. As the recruiting coordinator, Ferris helped put together five nationally-ranked recruiting classes and helped Rice to three NCAA Tournament appearances as well as its first-ever Conference USA title in 2009. Primarily working with the outside hitters, Ferris coached three outside hitter to All-American honors and 11 All-C-USA selections. Ferris was promoted to associate head coach in 2014.
Before her time at Rice, Ferris was an assistant coach at Wyoming for two seasons and led them to a 35-27 record. In 2002, Wyoming recorded its first 20-win season since 1989.
Ferris' collegiate coaching career began in 1998 when she assisted at Texas State and helped the Bobcats to a 29-4 record in 2000.
As a player, Ferris attended Arizona where she still ranks in the top-10 in program history in kills and solo blocks. She helped the Wildcats reach the NCAA Sweet 16 twice, and won a silver medal at the 1993 United States Olympic Festival. After playing professionally in Switzerland, Ferris was named to the Pac-10 All-Decade team in 1998.