PORT CLINTON — Stephanie Meyer always wanted to be a coach.
Not because she was a standout athlete in multiple sports, but because she wanted to impart lessons her girls would take with them off the court.
Meyer, who played basketball at Capital University after graduating from Clyde in 2007, is in her first year as varsity volleyball coach at Port Clinton.
“She’s really positive,” Redskins senior Jess Lorensen said. “Most coaches make you run if you mess up but she fixes the problem rather than punishing. She’s very encouraging.”
Meyer implores her girls to talk and move their feet at all times.
“Communication and confidence,” Meyer said. “You can’t be a good team if you’re not confident in yourself and the team won’t be confident if you’re not confident in yourself. We have to believe we can do it. With communication, volleyball is an interdependent sport.”
Port Clinton’s girls were down for a few matches before a setback to Huron last week but Meyer helped instill a little confidence as the Redskins work to find a rhythm.
“Every single time we get down she reminds us she believes in us,” Lorensen said. “Everybody had each other’s back, and we came ready to play.”
Meyer, who finished as Clyde’s all-time leading scorer for basketball, was coached by John Cahill for hoops and Brian Miller for volleyball at the varsity level. She also ran track for two years.
“What led me to coaching was that my coaches had such a positive impact on me,” Meyer said. “I wanted to give girls that kind of experience. It’s encouraging to come into the gym with 22 girls who most days are eager to see the coaches and get after it.
“It’s nice to see girls succeed and feeling successful. That makes it worthwhile.”
Meyer landed with one of the Fliers’ adversaries in the Sandusky Bay Conference but knows there are no hard feelings. Clyde will visit Port Clinton for a “Volley for a Cure” match Tuesday.
“It’s kind of funny,” she said. “Clyde’s coach was the JV coach when I played. Brittany Nesbitt, the JV coach at Margaretta, and I are friends.
“It’s like my second time around (the conference). Obviously, every team wants to win with the competitive aspect … it’s great.”
Meyer had no preconceived notion as to when she’d join the coaching ranks.
“I always have wanted to be a coach,” she said. “I didn’t know if it would be at 24 or later. The head coach spot came on suddenly, and it’s something I enjoy.”
Meyer advanced to the district finals with the volleyball team as a senior but even then that wasn’t really what it was about for her.
“The girls I played with,” she said. “We had a large senior class and we had so much fun together. We were successful because we all got along. You don’t remember specific games but it’s the fun with friends and life lessons like responsibility.”