The Spartans came from behind to defeat Pacific, 3-2, on Saturday.
The 2017 season on the court was the Spartans' best in 11 years.
The 2018 season marks the fifth year with Jolene Shepardson at the helm San José State University women's volleyball program.
Shepardson has led the Spartan program back to heights that have not been seen in over 10 years. The 2017 team finished the year with a 17-12 overall record and 9-9 Mountain West mark. It was the first winning season for the volleyball program since the 2006 season. The nine MW wins was also the most for San José State since joining the conference in 2012.
With upsets on their mind, the Spartans defeated MW champion Colorado State at Spartan Gym in 2016 and 2017. The 2017 win stopped the Rams 15-match winning streak and gave SJSU its first win over a ranked opponent since 2001. The 2016 team defeated Colorado State for the first time since 1998 and ended the Rams’ 31-MW match winning streak.
San José State has recorded a winning non-conference record each of the past four years and won the Spartan Invitational in 2016 and the Drake Invitational in 2017. The 2017 team got off to an 11-4 start, the most wins through the month of September since 2001.
In the classroom, seven Spartans have earned 12 Mountain Scholar Athlete accolades and 14 players have earned 27 Academic All-Mountain West honors in four years. Jamie Hirai and Julie Sam were honored as first team Arthur Ashe, Jr. Sports Scholars in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
Shepardson took over the program at Bakersfield in 2011 season and coached a 0-31 team in 2010 to an 8-18 record in her first year. The improved number of 10.5, determined by adding the difference in victories between the two seasons to the difference in losses and dividing by two, was the sixth-best improvement in the NCAA. The 2012 team continued the upward progression, finishing with a 14-17 record in the team's final season as an NCAA Division I Independent.
Her 2013 team ended the season with a 21-12 overall record and 12-4 mark in the Western Athletic Conference, setting a school record for the most wins in a season. The team finished second in the WAC regular-season standings and advanced to the championship match of the WAC Tournament. Three Roadrunners earned first or second team All-WAC honors for their play, and four players received Academic All-WAC honors.
Shepardson spent the 2010 season as an assistant coach at Virginia Tech. The Hokies played in their first NCAA Tournament match in school history that season and advanced to the second round to play eventual national champion Penn State. Two Virginia Tech players earned All-America honors (Felicia Willoughby and Cara Baarendse).
Prior to her time at Tech, Shepardson was an assistant coach at recruiting coordinator at American University in 2009, coached with Front Range Volleyball Club in Colorado from 2006-08 and was a volunteer assistant coach at Winthrop (2005) and at Regis University (2004-05).
As a collegiate player at the University of South Florida, the former Jolene Patton helped the Bulls win two Conference USA Regular-Season Co-Championships (2000 and 2002) and make two NCAA Tournament appearances those seasons. The 2002 team advanced to the second round of the tournament, sweeping Florida State in the first round before losing to host Florida 3-1.
Shepardson graduated from the University of South Florida in 2002 with a degree in psychology. She is a National Academy of Sports Medicine certified Personal Trainer.
She and her husband, Aaron, have two daughters Mirabelle (6) and Marielle (3), and two sons McCoy (4) and Major, born on July 6.
Shepardson's Coaching Record
|2013||21-12||12-4||Bakersfield - 2nd Place WAC Regular Season
Runners-Up WAC Tournament
|2014||4-27||1-17||San José State|
|2015||13-18||5-13||San José State|
|2016||12-18||5-13||San José State|
|2017||17-12||9-9||San José State|
|4 years||46-75||20-52||San José State|
The Shepardson Family (from top left): Aaron, Major, Jolene, Marielle, McCoy, Mirabelle.