Montana to face Eastern Washington Thursday, Idaho Saturday
Capri Richardson has 20 kills on .417 hitting and eight blocks
Montana defeats Portland State for the first time since 2004
Montana hosts Portland State and Sacramento State this week
Action & event photos
Montana vs. North Dakota (10/3/14)
Montana vs. Seattle (9/18/14)
Montana vs. Cal Poly (8/29/14)
Meet the Griz :: 2014 volleyball photo day
The 2014 season is Jerry Wagner's ninth year as head coach at the University of Montana. He was hired in May 2006, marking a return to the program that provided him his first NCAA Division I coaching position in 1988.
Through his first eight years coaching the Grizzlies, Wagner's teams have six times finished .500 or better in the Big Sky Conference and five times advanced to the Big Sky tournament.
Montana qualified for three straight tournaments from 2008-10, the program's first three-year run of appearances since 1992-94. At the 2013 tournament, No. 5 Montana defeated No. 4 Northern Arizona in the quarterfinals. It was the Grizzlies' first postseason victory since 1996.
Wagner has a career record entering the 2014 season of 96-124. His teams have an eight-year league record of 68-68. Montana had a 12-58 Big Sky record the five seasons prior to Wagner's arrival.
Montana had not had a first-team All-Big Sky Conference selection since 1996 when Wagner was hired. In the last eight seasons, Wagner and his staff have developed five: Claudia Houle in 2006, Jaimie Thibeault in 2008, '09 and '10 and Kayla Reno in 2013.
Thibeault became just the third player in Montana volleyball history to earn three first-team all-conference selections, joining Cindy Pitzinger (1985-87), who was inducted into the Grizzly Sports Hall of Fame in 2005, and Karen Goff (1992-94).
Thibeault was voted the league's Outstanding Freshman in 2007, Brittney Brown the Top Newcomer in 2008 and Brown the Libero of the Year in 2009.
The Grizzlies have had 46 Academic All-Big Sky Conference selections under Wagner, and his teams have posted at least a 3.0 GPA every semester since he was hired. Thirteen of those 16 semesters have resulted in a team GPA of 3.2 or better.
Montana has been a recipient of the American Volleyball Coaches Association's Team Academic Award in 2008-09, 2010-11 and 2013-14 for having an academic-year GPA of 3.3 or better.
Wagner's Division I coaching experience began in 1988 when he was hired by legendary Griz coach Dick Scott to serve as an assistant. Wagner helped Montana to two 20-win seasons in his three years (1988-90) and the program's first NCAA tournament appearance in 1990.
Wagner took an assistant job under Dave Gantt at Oregon State following the 1990 season. Wagner spent eight years as an assistant with the Beavers (1991-98), helping those teams to 125 victories and trips to the Women's Invitational Volleyball Championship (WIVC) in 1993 and 1994.
Following the 1998 season, Wagner reunited with Gantt at Montana State. Wagner was the top assistant with the Bobcats for four years (1999-2002) and was elevated to the position of associate head coach for the 2003 and 2004 seasons.
In those six years, the Bobcats went 117-54 and advanced to six Big Sky Conference tournaments.
Wagner spent the 2005 season as an assistant at Gonzaga, where he helped the Bulldogs to their best record in a decade, before returning to Montana.
Born in Havre, Mont., Wagner is the youngest of four children and a 1979 graduate of Havre High.
Wagner's coaching career started the fall of his first year in college when he was a student assistant coach for the Northern Montana College (now Montana State-Northern) volleyball program in Havre. He coached for two seasons (1979-80) before graduating with an associate degree in drafting.
After working as a draftsman in the private sector for two years, Wagner enrolled again at Northern Montana in the fall of 1983. He graduated in 1986 with a degree in secondary education and an extended major in physical education.
Wagner spent four falls (1983-86) as an assistant at NMC and spent the 1985, 1986 and 1987 winter seasons as the first head volleyball coach at Havre High.
Wagner worked as the head coach at Northern Montana in 1987 before joining Scott's staff at Montana in 1988.
Montana year-by-year under Wagner
2006 ... 12-15, 9-7 BSC (4th) ... Advanced to Big Sky tournament
2007 ... 10-16, 6-10 BSC (7th)
2008 ... 14-13, 10-6 BSC (t-3rd) ... Advanced to Big Sky tournament
2009 ... 14-14, 10-6 BSC (4th) ... Advanced to Big Sky tournament
2010 ... 13-15, 9-7 BSC (t-3rd) ... Advanced to Big Sky tournament
2011 ... 11-13, 8-8 BSC (5th)
2012 ... 6-23, 4-16 (t-10th)
2013 ... 16-15, 12-8 (5th) ... Advanced to Big Sky tournament
Wagner's Division I coaching resume
Assistant coach, University of Montana ... Three seasons, 1988-90
Assistant coach, Oregon State University ... Eight seasons, 1991-98
Assistant coach, Montana State University ... Four seasons, 1999-2002
Associate head coach, Montana State University ... Two seasons, 2003-04
Assistant coach, Gonzaga University ... One season, 2005
Head coach, University of Montana ... 2006-present
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