Amy Blanke named Head Beach Volleyball Coach at New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS – New Orleans Vice President of Athletics and Recreation Tim Duncan announced the promotion of Amy Blanke to head beach volleyball coach, effective immediately. Blanke joined the Privateers as a beach assistant coach in 2017 was instrumental in the record-breaking 2019 campaign that featured 15 victories.
Duncan also announced the restructuring of indoor volleyball and beach volleyball as the two will be separated. Blanke will lead the beach squad and hire an assistant coach, and indoor volleyball will have a head coach and its own assistant coach.
“After speaking to the student-athletes in the beach program, they made it clear we were not maximizing their sport to the best of its ability”, said Duncan. “I took those conversations to heart and wanted to provide them with the experience they deserved. That ultimately meant separating the beach team from indoor volleyball and providing dedicated staff to coach and mentor the team.”
“When it came time to select a coach for the independent beach team, the student-athletes, Associate AD, Kim Gallow and I agreed that Amy Blanke was the best and most logical person to be the new head coach,” continued Duncan. “As assistant coach, Amy proved she was ready for this promotion primarily because of her coaching acumen and the tremendous relationships she developed with her team. I am eager to see her embrace this new role and excel in it!”
“I am beyond excited for beach volleyball to be its own program,” said Blanke. “This is something that the coaches and athletes have been wanting for a long time. This move is instrumental in taking this program to the next level. I cannot thank Millicent Van Norden enough for taking me under her wing and giving me the autonomy to coach the beach program the moment I came in. Also, thank you to Tim Duncan and the athletes for trusting me to continue coaching for the University of New Orleans. This is going to be an incredible year.”
This season, Blanke led the Privateers to a win in the inaugural Southland Conference Tournament match. The Privateers were ranked in the top 50 nationally in the Pablo Beach National Rankings and the top pair – Veronica Corcoran and Victoria Corcoran – were in the top 100 for most of the season.
In 2020, the Privateers went 7-3 prior to the shutdown due to COVID-19. The 2019 club earned votes in the final AVCA poll and the top pair of Veronica Corcoran and Rachel Kuhn received AVCA Top Flight Honors.
The 2018 campaign featured UNO advance to the Southland Showcase championship with wins over Abilene Christian, Central Arkansas (twice) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. Prior to joining the Privateers, Blanke spent a season at Tulane, helping the Green Wave to their best year to that point in Tulane’s four-year history (18-10) and a No. 19 national rankings.
Blanke worked with East Valley Junior Volleyball Club and High Performance Arizona in 2014 and 2015.
After a standout indoor career at Cleveland State, Blanke moved to ULM for the inaugural beach season and went 12-12 at No. 2.
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