Dec. 8, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Women’s volleyball head coach Jim Stone has been selected as the Tachikara/American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division I Mideast Region Coach of the Year. Stone has helped Ohio State to an 18-match improvement over last year’s team, which failed to qualify for the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship. The Buckeyes have advanced to this weekend’s NCAA Tournament region semifinal round after winning their 29th match of the season against in-state rival Ohio University. Ohio State began the season by winning its first 19 matches after being picked sixth in the Big Ten Conference Preseason Poll. Ohio State finished tied for second in the league and currently ranks seventh in the USA Today/CSTV Top 25 Coaches Poll. The Buckeyes hold 13 wins against teams that qualified for the 2004 NCAA Tournament, including second-seed Penn State and fourth-seed Minnesota. Stone has been selected Tachikara/AVCA Region Coach of the Year four times, including the 1988, 1989 and 1991 seasons. Earlier he was named the Big Ten Coach of the Year for the fourth time.

Each of the honorees from the eight regions will represent their region on the Tachikara/AVCA National Coach of the Year ballot. The awards will be officially presented at the Tachikara/AVCA Coach of the Year and Victory Club Awards banquet in Long Beach, Calif., on Thursday, Dec. 16, at the 2004 American Volleyball Coaches Association Annual Convention.

Ohio State, seeded fifth in the NCAA Championship bracket, is 29-3 on the season and has advanced to the Minneapolis Regional Semifinals at the Sports Pavilion, where they will play 12th-seeded Tennessee (32-2) Friday at 6 p.m. ET. Unseeded Georgia Tech (27-6) faces host and fourth seed Minnesota (30-4) in the second semifinal at 8 p.m. ET. The winners return Saturday at 8 p.m. ET to play for a berth in the National Championship semifinals in Long Beach, Calif. The Regional Championship match will be carried live by College Sports Television (CSTV).