Fruita fills volleyball coaching vacancy

Fruita Monument High School filled its vacant volleyball coach position by hiring Bob Richardson on Tuesday.

Richardson was an assistant coach at Grand Junction High School for the past four seasons.

Richardson said he waited two months before contacting the Wildcats’ athletic department about the job.

“I knew it was open and took some time to think about it then decided to put my name in the running,” Richardson said. “I’ve been coaching volleyball in some capacity for eight years.”

Before serving on the Grand Junction staff, Richardson coached the Grand Junction Jaguars, a club team. Richardson said he’s always loved the game, but gained more knowledge on it when following his daughter Brittany.

“(Brittany) played a lot of different places for a lot of different coaches,” Richardson said. “I’ve become somewhat of an expert because I’ve studied the game as far as a coach’s approach and have developed my own approach.”

With this being Richardson’s first head coaching job, he said the most important step now is to put together a solid staff. After that, it’s preparing for the season.

“I would really like to develop a good staff,” Richardson said. “Once the basketball season is over, we’ll have some open gyms, then camps in the summer, do plenty of conditioning, and we should hit the ground running by the time the season rolls around.”

Richardson is inheriting a team that finished 8-12 last year, and returns two all-conference performers in outside hitter Camille Kovach and setter Angie Archuleta. When it comes to setting goals, Richardson is planning on working his way up.

“I want them to win the Valley, compete with Grand Junction and Central,” Richardson said. “That’s where it’s going to start, and after that, winning the conference is something we’d like to do at Fruita.”

As far as on the court, Richardson said he’s going to be preaching smart play.

“I want to have the smartest team we can put on the court, a group that doesn’t beat themselves,” Richardson said. “I think defense is important, we will try to be a scrappy team that’s tough to score against.”

Richardson is the second fall coach to be hired, after Shawn Marsh’s hiring as football coach. Fruita Monument Athletic Director Denny Squibb said hiring Richardson is a good move for the program.

“We feel real good about the coach we hired for this position,” Squibb said in a press release Tuesday. “He will be good for our girls.”


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