POTSDAM -- Josh Stokes has been selected as the new head volleyball coach for the SUNY Potsdam Bears.
Stokes will leave a position at Southern Vermont College to return to Potsdam, where he previously served as an assistant coach under departing head coach Steve Pike.
"Josh has proven himself as an extremely capable recruiter and successful head coach," said SUNY Potsdam Athletic Director James Zalacca. "Under his leadership, we look forward to our volleyball program's continual development."
For the last three seasons Stokes has been head men’s and women’s volleyball coach for the Southern Vermont College Mountaineers’.
During his tenure the women's team posted a 69-19 overall record and a 20-3 mark in the New England Collegiate Conference. His women's squad set the school record with 31 wins in 2011. The Mountaineers recorded back-to-back conference championships and NCAA Tournament appearances in 2011 and 2012. His women's program produced two-time NECC Player of the Year Jessica Alvarez and All-American Danielle Healis.
He was named NECC women's volleyball Coach of the Year in 2011 and 2012 and earned the same men's honor in 2011.
He guided the men's team to Southern Vermont's single-season wins records in 2010 and 2011 and is the all-“winningest” coach in program history.
"This is a true honor being asked to be the head coach at Potsdam," Stokes said. "It will be tough to follow in the footsteps of Steve Pike, but having worked with him before, I believe I can continue to carry on the wonderful traditions he has instilled into the program. I am very excited to work with the women that are coming back and the future women that will join the program.”
“It truly is a blessing to join SUNY Potsdam one more time. I will miss everything about Southern Vermont, especially both of my volleyball teams. The journey was amazing and I look forward to my next adventure," he said.
Stokes spent two years as a setter with his alma mater Ramapo College. The Roadrunners were ECAC Tournament Champions in 2003 and runners-up the following season. In two years he recorded 1,200 assists, over 200 kills and digs and 75 blocks. He made the Skyline Conference All-Academic team twice.
Stokes first came to the North Country as the assistant volleyball coach for Clarkson University, spending the 2007 and 2008 seasons with the team. He then went to SUNY Potsdam as Pike's assistant for next two years.
Stokes graduated from Ramapo in 2004 with a bachelor's degree in psychology and received a master's in education from SUNY Potsdam in 2009.
The Bears will open the 2013 season with a 6 p.m. match Aug. 30 at the Oneonta Invitational against Hartwick College.