Athletic directors at the Class 5A level have proven to be the most invested in controlling their own playoff destiny since a switch to the...
South Medford handed the keys to its volleyball program over to a familiar face this week.
On Thursday, the Panthers announced they had named 2006 South Medford High graduate Emily Marshall as its new coach. Marshall replaces Sarah Costa, who stepped down as coach after six seasons.
Marshall, an English teacher at South, had worked with the junior varsity and freshman volleyball programs.
"She's done a good job with the JV and frosh programs," said South Medford athletic director Dennis Murphy. "We think she's earned it. We felt it was time to give her a chance at the helm."
Marshall's father, Dan, has been involved with the South softball team, while her brother, Boomer, is an assistant coach with the Panther football squad.
"She's a Panther through and through," said Murphy. "And she's on staff. We're trying to get more head coaches that are on staff.
"It's a great opportunity for her and we are excited to have her."
Marshall takes over a team that has been to the postseason in each of the last four seasons. Over the last six seasons, Costa guided South to two winning campaigns and compiled a 51-83-1 record overall and a 13-39 mark in conference play.
This past season, the Panthers went 8-14 overall and tied for fourth in the Southern Oregon Hybrid at 1-7.
The program has not advanced beyond the first round of the state playoffs in the last three seasons.