Head Coach Suzie Fritz
- Florida Atlantic University: assistant coach, 1994
- Barton County Community College: assistant
- Kansas State University: assistant coach, 1997-2000
- Kansas State University: head coach, 2001-present
- A2 USA National Team; Head Coach 2009, Assistant Coach 2006
Athletic & Academic Honors Under Fritz
- 6 All-Americans
- 14 All-District Selections
- 29 All-Big 12 Conference Selections
- 32 Big 12 Conference Players of the Week
- 10 AVCA Team Academic Awards
- 16 Academic All-District Selections
- 79 Academic All-Big 12 Conference Selections
Contact Coach Fritz
In 12 seasons at the helm of K-State Volleyball, Suzie Fritz has established herself as not only one of the most successful coaches in K-State history, but also the nation. Fritz has led the Wildcats to nine NCAA Tournament appearances as head coach, 13 dating back to her days as an assistant coach, the school's first-ever conference title in 2003 and three Sweet 16 appearances. She is the winningest coach of the program's history with a record of 238-136 (.636) in 12 complete seasons as K-State head coach. Fritz has seen 11 All-American honors, 17 All-Region distinctions and 40 All-Big 12 awards in her time on the K-State coaching staff.
The last two seasons have seen tremendous success for Fritz and the K-State volleyball program. The Wildcats have advanced to the NCAA Tournament in each of the last two years, which are the eighth and ninth tournament appearances under Fritz. K-State has been led by current senior outside hitter Kaitlynn Pelger. The Olathe, Kansas native earned AVCA All-America honorable mention in 2011 and 2012 as well as being named to the 2011 Volleyball Magazine All-America third-team, becoming the seventh different All-American in program history and sixth with Fritz leading the team.
In 2012, K-State advanced to the NCAA Tournament after compiling a 21-8 regular season record. The season started off hot with K-State opening the year 12-0 and defeating No. 20 Dayton and No. 10 Minnesota at the Golden Hurricane Classic hosted by Tulsa. K-State added another win over a ranked opponent when they defeated No. 22 Iowa State. During nonconference play, the Wildcats were dominant, winning 11 matches by a score of 3-0. The Wildcats even broke the school record for consecutive sets won when they captured 23 straight sets. The streak started with the fourth set against Oregon State on August 25 and lasted eight matches until K-State dropped the first set in the win against Minnesota on September 14.
The 2012 campaign followed up a 2011 season in which the Wildcats, under the leadership of Fritz and All-Big 12 performances of Pelger and Lilla Porubek, reached the NCAA Tournament Regional Semifinals. K-State defeated its former Big 12 rival Nebraska in the second round to advance to the Regional Semifinals, its third semifinal appearance under Fritz's direction. The victory was the first time the Huskers had lost an NCAA Tournament match at home in the first two rounds of the tournament. It also ended a 16-year streak for the Cornhuskers in which they reached the Regional Semifinals.
While the last two years have been great on and off the court for the Wildcats, the K-State reign of success extends all the way back to Fritz's first season at the helm back in 2001. In her inaugural season as the K-State head coach, Fritz led the Wildcats to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and a 20-8 record. It was the highest winning percentage in school history (.714) by a first-year coach.
In 2001, Liz Wegner became the first player in Kansas State history to be named an All-American team twice in her career, as she was named an honorable mention All-American by Volleyball Magazine. Wegner joined fellow senior Lisa Mimick on the 2001 All-Big 12 first team.
Following her debut season, Fritz took the team again to the NCAA Tournament in 2002, a streak of post-season tournament appearances that would extend to five straight for the Wildcats under Fritz's leadership.
Three Wildcats were named first team All-Big 12 in 2002, marking the fifth year in a row - all under Fritz's tenure - that the program placed two players on the league's first team. The 2002 squad gained valuable experience with a number of players returning the next year for the most successful season in school history.
Fritz led the Wildcats to their first conference championship in school history in 2003, which was just her third year as head coach. K-State posted a 30-5 record and was a perfect 18-0 at home in Ahearn Field House. After losing the first two matches of the season, the Wildcats went on winning streaks of 12 and 16 matches en route to the conference title. Kansas State took both matches from conference power Nebraska, including just the program's second win on the road against the Cornhuskers.
Lauren Goehring and Gabby Guerre were both named All-Americans for their contributions during the 2003 season with Goehring earning first team honors and Guerre receiving an honorable mention. Goehring was also the school's first conference player of the year. The Wildcats had three players on the All-Big 12 first team with an additional two as honorable mentions.
Success for the Wildcats has come more than just on the court under Fritz as she and her players have taken the term student-athlete to heart. The Wildcats have established themselves as one of the top performing teams in the classroom in the nation. In 2008, K-State led the conference in first team Academic All-Big 12 honorees for the fourth consecutive year. The team also earned the AVCA Academic Team award in Fritz's first seven years. K-State earned the honor once again in 2012-13, marking the 10th time in the last 12 years that the Wildcats have earned the award. The award is given to teams maintaining a cumulative 3.30 GPA or higher on a 4.0 scale.
K-State has tallied 79 Academic All-Big 12 selections and 16 Academic All-District student-athletes during Fritz's tenure to go with the 10 AVCA Team Academic Awards. JuliAnne Chisholm also earned back-to-back Academic All-America status in 2009 and 2010.
Along with academic awards and 11 All-American performances on the court, K-State has earned 40 All-Big 12 nods and 34 Big 12 Players of the Week with Fritz on the staff.
Fritz began her head coaching career at K-State as an interim head coach after Jim McLaughlin left the program shortly before the start of the 2001 season. After a 9-5 start in her first year, Fritz was named the program's permanent head coach. She took the reins from McLaughlin after serving as his top assistant for four years.
Jeff Grove has been with the Wildcats the last 11 years as an assistant coach under Suzie Fritz after returning to the program in 2002. He helped orchestrate the rise of the Wildcat program as an assistant alongside of Fritz from 1997-99 and has continued to play a big role in its success.
Over the last 11 seasons, Grove has helped lead the Wildcats to a 218-128 overall record and a Big 12 title in 2003. He also coached two-time Big 12 Conference Liberos of the Year Laura Downey-Wallace and Angie Lastra as well as First Team All-Big 12 and AVCA All-American Lauren Goehring.
Since Grove's return, the Wildcats have remained one of the top programs in the competitive Big 12 Conference and reached the NCAA Tournament eight times. He serves as the team's top assistant coach and helps in the development of all phases of the program with specific duties as defensive coordinator. During his time as defensive coordinator, K-State has finished in the top three in the conference in blocking four of the past six years. He coordinates and evaluates all statistical and video applications for the program as well as coordinating tape exchange and creating opponent scouting reports.
"It's very unusual to have the opportunity in the coaching business to work with someone as long as Jeff and I have. He is a man of strong character and commitment and is philosophically a great fit for K-State and the way we want to do things," Fritz said. "He has tremendous technical knowledge, understands training at a high level and is excellent with statistical measurement and analysis. I trust in and have the highest respect for him, both as a person and a volleyball coach."
As the defensive coordinator for the team, Grove has coached a number of great defensive players in K-State history, including the most prolific libero the Wildcats have had. Lastra finished her career atop the career digs list with 2,032. She holds multiple school records, including digs by a freshman and senior and digs in a season. Lastra also was the first libero to be named Big 12 Player of the Week before the conference created an award for both offense and defense.
Grove has made the Wildcat defense tough to break making the opponent's attack less efficient. Counting Grove's first and current stints on staff, the Wildcats have held their opponents to a hitting percentage under .200 in nine of his 14 seasons, including a low .164 in the team's Big 12 Championship run in 2003.
In July 2008, Grove coached at the USA High Performance Championship in Tucson, Ariz. He served as an assistant coach for the Junior National A2 Team and worked with some of the top young talent in the nation.
During Grove's first tour in Manhattan, he was one of the original members of Jim McLaughlin's staff at K-State and a significant component in building the successful Wildcat program of today. He helped guide the team to a 60-34 overall record from 1997-99 and three consecutive bids to the NCAA Tournament. He was responsible for coaching the outside hitters, including K-State's first All-American Dawn Cady and former Team USA alternate Kim Zschau. He also assisted with team travel and recruiting.
Full Coach Suzie Fritz Bio
Assistant Coach Jeff Grove
Full Coach Jeff Grove Bio
Jeff Hulsmeyer joined the Kansas State coaching staff in 2009 and adds 17 years of experience as an assistant and head coach to the Wildcat program. His previous coaching stint came at Georgetown College in Kentucky where he saw quick success. At K-State, his responsibilities include serving as the offensive coordinator as well as recruiting coordinator. His impact was felt immediately at K-State with the 2010 recruiting class ranked in the Top 30 by PrepVolleyball.com.
As the recruiting coordinator Hulsmeyer has continued to bring in some of the top regional and national talent into Manhattan. When asked about his role Hulsmeyer said, "I love recruiting to Manhattan and Kansas State. It's such a friendly city with great support for an outstanding university and volleyball program."
As the head coach of Georgetown College, an NAIA school, he led the Tigers to a 75-14 record over two years and a No. 5 ranking in 2007. Both years he was named the conference and region coach of the year. Before his time at Georgetown College, Hulsmeyer was the head coach at Purdue from 1999-2003. At Purdue, he helped the Boilermakers win the President's Cup as the team with the highest GPA at the school. During his four years at Purdue, the team placed 20 student-athletes on the Big Ten All-Academic team.
At K-State, he has worked with the setters and helped convert Caitlyn Donahue to the position from defensive specialist. In her second season at the position, Donahue ranked second in the Big 12 Conference in assists per set at 11.22. She also had 16 double-doubles in 2011 as well as posted the first triple-double by a Wildcat since Gabby Guerre in 2004.
In 2013, Hulsmeyer will help redshirt freshman Katie Brand succeed Donahue at the Wildcats' starting setter position. Brand sat out the 2012 season to watch and learn from Donahue and Hulsmeyer, prepping her for the role in the future.
Assisting with the offensive strategy for the Wildcats in Hulsmeyer's first year on staff, K-State saw Kelsey Chipman rank among the most efficient attackers in the Big 12 Conference and earn All-Big 12 Honorable Mention.
"Jeff has been a wonderful addition to our staff," Fritz said. "He brings great experience at all levels and is a proven trainer and recruiter. His enthusiasm for coaching, his character and integrity and his level of commitment to our program and our players will be exceptional."
Assistant Coach Jeff Hulsmeyer
Full Coach Jeff Hulsmeyer Bio