Honaker steps down as head volleyball coach
By Brad Blume
Sports Information Director
South Dakota School of Mines
RAPID CITY ‐‐‐ After two seasons as head coach of the South Dakota School of Mines women’s volleyball program, Beth Honaker has resigned her position.
“I’m moving to Seattle, Wash., to join my fiancé Jake Donnelly,” Honaker said. “He is an electrical engineer at the Puget Sound Naval Ship Yard there.”
Honaker has been with the Hardrockers for three seasons, spending one year as an assistant coach before being promoted in 2007, taking control of the program from Doug Tabbert.
“Coach Honaker came in as an assistant for one year and was a positive addition to the program for that year,” said Hardrocker Athletics Director Hugh Welsh. “When coach Tabbert resigned and went to Nebraska‐Kearney, Beth was our obvious choice for our next head coach.”
South Dakota School of Mines volleyball head coach Beth Honaker (center) talks to her team during a recent home match. Honaker has resigned her position as head volleyball coach. Photo by Brad Blume
During her first season as head coach, the Hardrockers had a phenomenal year, finishing with a 23‐6 record and making an appearance in the Dakota Athletic Tournament Title match as well as finishing third in the 2007 regular season rankings.
“She stepped in and led us to one of our finest season in recent history. This past year was a little more of a challenge because of attrition, but coach Honaker still did a good job,” Welsh added.
SD Mines finished seventh this past year and their season ended in the DAC quarterfinals at the hands of the Black Hills State Yellow Jackets.
“I’ve had the opportunity to work with many talented individuals over the last three seasons,” Honaker said. Honaker has achieved some impressive things during her brief stint as a Hardrocker. Since joining the program in 2006, the Hardrockers have made three‐straight appearances in the post season tournament, defeated Black Hills State for the first time in 12 attempts (2007); earned their first DAC victory over Dickinson State (2008) ‐‐‐ it was also the first win over the Blue Hawks in more than 12 years.
Originally from Walkerton, Ind., Honaker came to South Dakota School of Mines from Northern Michigan University where she earned a BS degree in Physical and Health Education in 2004 and also a MS degree in Exercise Science in 2006.
“I want to thank Hugh Welsh for giving me the opportunity to coach one of the better volleyball team that the South Dakota School of Mines has seen in quite some time,” Honaker said. “Hugh took a chance on a young female coach with little experience. I appreciate all that he and the rest of the administration have done to help me better my career.”
Honaker finished with a 35‐22 overall record while coaching at SD Mines. She was also an assistant track coach for the Hardrockers. Honaker’s main duties were to help the hurdlers and sprinters. Under her tutelage, Honaker has coached two NAIA track All‐Americans and one NAIA track National Champion.
“The entire department will miss Beth. She was a real team player and easy person to deal with, and a very good coach,” Welsh said. “Beth also was a real positive addition to our track and field coaching staff. I want to wish Beth the best of luck on her future endeavors.”
The South Dakota School of Mines athletics department will begin to look for Honaker’s replacement.
“The position will be advertised within the next week and we will conduct a national search for our next head volleyball coach,” Welsh said.
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