BEMIDJI, Minn. — Bemidji State University head volleyball coach Wayne Chadwick has announced the addition of Elaina Kakatolis as assistant coach to the Beavers’ volleyball staff.
“Elaina comes in with a lot of great experience,” commented Chadwick. “She played and was a team captain at the Division I level at Ball State. After graduating, she was a graduate assistant at Northwestern State, another D-I school, where she took on a lot of coaching responsibility.
“I am thrilled to have her on our staff.”
Kakatolis joins the Bemidji State staff after two years as a graduate assistant coach at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, La. There she was responsible for coaching during both practice and games, game day preparations, opponent scouting, game file and video exchange. In addition she served as the team’s academic, compliance and community service organizer. During her time with the Demons, the team’s GPA improved from 2.4 to 3.3, it qualified for the SLC Championship Tournament in 2011 and she coached the league’s freshman of the year.
A two-time captain at Ball State University (2005-2010) Kakatolis completed her collegiate career 14th in the program history with 2,203 attempts. One of the top blockers in program history, she finished ranked 16th in block assists (227) and 18th in career total blocks (249). In addition, her 127 sets played in 2008 tie as the 17th-best single-season total in Cardinals’ volleyball history.
The addition of an assistant at BSU is due to an NCAA Grant for Advancement of Monitory Women. BSU was one of 18 schools around the country selected for the grant of assuring two-years of matching funds for a new coaching position.
“Having an assistant coach is going to be a huge benefit for us,” said Chadwick. “There is a reason [the NSIC] is the strongest Division II women’s volleyball league in the country. It’s the coaching staffs around the league that have elevated us to that level. Keeping pace with the other coaching staffs in the league will be huge for us.”
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooden region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, BSU sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).