Kendall Paulus was named the Head Coach for the SIUE volleyball in October 2017, becoming the fifth person in history to lead the program.
Paulus begins her eighth season with SIUE and second full season as the head coach, having previously served as an assistant for the Cougars. In 2016, she was part of the coaching staff that earned Ohio Valley Conference Coach of the Year honors while recording 22 wins, the most in the Division I era. She has been on the front lines of SIUE’s time in the OVC and as a top 100 program in Division I.
Paulus, who set the school record for wins by a rookie head coach with 23, has focused much of her attention as the defensive coordinator for the Cougars. She has been in charge of training pin hitters and ball control players. Off the court, she assisted with budgeting, recruiting, video breakdown, travel, equipment, and opponent scouting.
Her opening season as head coach was a memorable one. She led the Cougars to their first-ever national postseason tournament. SIUE participated in the National Invitational Volleyball Championship with All-OVC performers Taylor Joens and Ashley Witt leading the way. SIUE finished No. 92 in the RPI, the best ranking in program history.
During the 2016 season, SIUE leaped to the forefront of the OVC, earning an RPI of 100 while advancing to the OVC Tournament Championship match for the second time. SIUE’s defense was stellar, ranking sixth nationally in opponent hitting percentage (.148) and 18th in digs per set (17.40). SIUE also was among the top 100 nationally in team digs, blocks per set, total blocks, and team attacks per set.
The SIUE volleyball program has been at the front of the line for academics, posting better than a 3.5 grade point average over each of the last four semesters, including an SIUE Athletics department-leading 3.638 during the fall of 2015 and a 3.643 during the spring of 2016.
Three honorees – Joens, Jackie Scott and Mallory Mangun – were named to the 2016 All-OVC team. SIUE boasted two 2016 All-OVC Tournament members in Mangun and Katie Shashack.
Paulus helped develop SIUE’s first player to ever playing professional indoors. Kristen Torre, of Highland, signed a professional contract with Prowin Volleys in Germany becoming the first Cougar to play professionally indoors. Torre, a two-time All-OVC middle hitter in 2014 and 2015, was discovered by the German team on an international tour in Croatia playing for Team BIP.
The 2014 season was a busy one for the Cougars that included a road victory over Southeastern Conference power Mississippi State. Cori Harris was named an OVC Scholar-Athlete, the most prestigious award handed out by the league. Senior Chelsea Colclasure also broke the school record for career digs and finished among the top five among active players in digs. Colclasure also was the first player in school history to record 500 or more digs in four straight seasons.
Paulus leads SIUE volleyball's efforts in community service and outreach. Paulus personally is a Big Sister in the Big Brother Big Sister program of Eastern Missouri.
A four-year letter winner at Iona College, Paulus started at both the outside and right side hitter positions for the Gaels from 2005 to 2008 while serving as a team captain her final two seasons. Paulus recorded 15 double-doubles in her career and finished with 18 matches where she recorded 10 or more kills.
Paulus earned Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) All-Academic team honors in each of her four years and was the recipient of the Iona Volleyball Merit Award as a senior for her work on the court, in the classroom, and her service to community. She also served three years as a member of Iona’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
Paulus earned a bachelor's degree in public relations from Iona in May 2009. She completed master's in kinesiology from SIUE in 2012.