Soni Brown has agreed to take over the position of head volleyball coach for the Star Valley Braves this upcoming season and takes over a team that won more than twice as many games as they lost last season and made a run in the playoffs as well. Brown is the first former Star Valley player to become the head coach at Star Valley high school since her own head coach she played under in the early 2000’s.
A huge part of the consistency model for the Lady Braves as far as Coach Brown is concerned is definitely the aspect of large sum returning pieces to the team with Coach Brown not only having served as an assistant for the previous 2 seasons but the team being quite young will be returning a lot of players from this past fall one would suspect. Knowing that there is already a dynamic in place and a relationship between coach and team is a huge stepping stone early on in the season to make sure when coaching needs to get done that everyone involved is already comfortable with the dynamic.
One of the early struggles Brown has run into is the versatility of many of her athletes, as she states there are a lot of 3-sport athletes on the roster from last season currently getting work for other sports and getting a summer schedule worked out that can accommodate everyone has been tricky early on but Brown insists during the interview on First Bank of Wyoming Sports Friday that it is very clear to all the players that the coaching staff is going to be very open to working with their schedules and not doubling down on them. A good problem to have most would think but one of the early challenges that is often faced by many first time head coaches at this level.
“I just feel like I am a little bit of every coach I ever played for or coached with” Coach Brown stated in regards to her general feeling as to what has shaped her personal coaching style. Sports in general were huge for Brown as she was going through high school and beyond and she says her reasoning for getting her degree in physical education was her love for teaching people the benefits of sports and competition and she brings this love for sport and the game of volleyball in particular with her into the next step in her educational journey when she takes over at the helm of the volleyball team in 2023.
When asked if there was any date in particular she was looking forward too or if she put particular stock in the conference games or rivalry games Coach said “Hey I am just excited to get this thing going and get out there”, she would also go on to state that it wasn’t an intentional focus to have gone undefeated in conference play a season ago and that she believes in being equally locked in and prepared for every opponent on the schedule. Coach Brown and the team can be seen on the hardwood this coming fall on SVI’s Vimeo page, or live in person throughout the fall as they compete to try and get back out there with the momentum they had going last season and hopefully make a deep postseason run.
The full interview can be heard below: