Katelyn Panzau returns for her second season with the Retrievers after joining the UMBC Volleyball staff as the top assistant coach in May 2013. She came to UMBC from her alma mater, Missouri State, where she served as an assistant for the Bears in 2012.
“Katelyn came very highly recommended from Coach Stokes, and after reviewing her resume she had skills that made her stand out,” said Blanchard. “She is a mature and focused individual with a fantastic personality, and I’m confident she will help our program reach the next level.
“She is highly intelligent and is incredibly thorough. Her attention to detail will make her a big asset to our team.”
In her first year with the Retrievers, Panzau helped guide the team to a 19-12 overall record with a 9-5 mark in America East play. UMBC advanced to the finals of the conference tournament after sweeping Albany, but lost to weekend host New Hampshire in five sets. Senior Mallory McIntyre was named the conference Setter of the Year for the second consecutive season and classmate Emily Witsaman joined her on the All-Conference First Team. McIntyre and Hannah Schmidt received a spot on the conference All-Academic Team.
After graduating from Missouri State in 2007, Panzau went into the private sector but then returned to Springfield, Mo. last year to help coach the Bears. During her time away, she coached club volleyball both in her hometown of Belleville, Ill. and in Springfield.
An accomplished athlete during her collegiate years, Panzau was the starting setter all four years of her career, first at the University of South Carolina (2003-04) and then at Missouri State (2006-07). After transferring, Panzau led the Bears to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances, including a trip to the second round in 2006. She was named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference First Team in each of her seasons at MSU.
“Her experience in playing at such a high level, both in the SEC at Carolina and then in the NCAA Tournament with Missouri State, will only be a positive for our team,” added Blanchard. “She will certainly boost our setters, but also our team as a whole as she will help with everything that we do.”
Prior to college, Panzau was named a high school All-American during her senior year while competing at Belleville West High School.
Panzau graduated from Missouri State in 2007 with a degree in Accounting and then later completed a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with an emphasis in Sports Management at MSU.