UF alum Hampton named new coach at P.K. Yonge

Published: Monday, January 10, 2011 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 11, 2011 at 12:16 a.m.

Marcie Hampton had an exceptional high school volleyball career at P.K. Yonge, which continued into a stellar college run just up the road at Florida.

Now, the best volleyball player to ever come out of the Gainesville area will shoot for equaled success on the sideline as a coach.

On Monday, Hampton was officially named P.K. Yonge's new volleyball coach.

“I wasn't expecting to stay in Gainesville and I wasn't expecting to coach, but I am very excited to be able to come back and coach at my alma mater,” said Hampton, who last year was named The Sun's high school volleyball player of the decade. “I love P.K. Yonge, I am a huge supporter of their athletic program and this is really fun to be able to come back.”

A two-time high school All-American, she led the Blue Wave to FHSAA Class 2A state championships in 2000 and 2002. Hampton also earned The Sun's player of the year award three times in addition to being named Miss Volleyball and the state's Gatorade player of the year in 2002. The 6-foot-1 outside hitter was a member of the USA Junior National Team in 2001, 2002 and 2004, and was captain of the gold medal USA Youth National team in 2002.

“We have such a great and storied program, with championships and playoff runs that make me so proud to be an alumni,” Hampton said. “I hope I am able to continue that success and that the kids have good experiences and look back at their high school career with some pride and with the same joy as I have.

“I love my high school experience so much. That is the most important thing for me.”

She went onto to play for the Gators and earned All-American and All-SEC honors. After her collegiate career was over, she served as an assistant coach at P.K. Yonge under Perry McDonald in 2008. The last two years, Hampton played overseas in Puerto Rico and in Sweden.

Hampton takes over the program from McDonald, who stepped down as the Blue Wave coach at the end of this past season and ended with a career record of 286-130 in 15 seasons. He coached P.K. Yonge for the last eight years, guiding the Blue Wave to a FHSAA Class 2A state runner-up finish in 2003 and to the regional finals in six of the last seven years.

“Marcie was one of the most prolific players, not only in the city of Gainesville, but in the state of Florida,” Gators coach Mary Wise said. “The best part, beyond the Xs and Os, is that she will be a terrific role model and mentor for the girls that come through the P.K. Yonge program.

“It is easy to see that Marcie has an incredibly high volleyball IQ. I am thrilled for Marcie and for P.K. Yonge, it is such a win-win.”

For Oak Hall coach Cari Martin, who has compiled more than 500 victories, she will now coach against someone who was a challenge to face as a player.

“I think she is the best overall player to come out of this area and out of the state of Florida,” Martin said. “I am going to be coaching against her, but I am going to be so proud to see how she has come back and is now going to be a coach and share her knowledge and teach.

“I know she is going to be successful as a coach and when I think of P.K. Yonge, I think of Marcie Hampton.”

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