Maurer uses championship pedigree to lead Braves

Some may say she is the rebuilder of programs, but coach Jenny Maurer has taken the Bradley volleyball team to new heights and continues to push her team in the right direction.

A two time national champion herself at Division III Washington University in St. Louis, Maurer takes her experiences on the court and transfers them to her players. Maurer contributes her successes on the court and now on the bench to her past coaches and her love for learning and teaching.

“I guess my calling card as a coach and the reason why I think I am successful at building programs is because I know what it takes to get to that championship level and win multiple championships,” Maurer said.

As a coach, Maurer was the architect of turning a once 0-29 Lehigh squad into a .500 team at the time of her departure. Maurer said at Lehigh she had to start over from scratch, but she was fortunate to be a school where the young women wanted to learn and be successful.

Maurer said winning multiple championships as a player and her time as a high school coach is something she carries with her on a daily basis, as she has taken all that she has learned and brought that to the Hilltop.

“Those rings bring back great memories I had with my teammates and coaches and everything I took away and learned from them as a player and as a human being,” Maurer said. “I think that being a high school coach I was able to develop players individually so that they can get better, but we still had to develop a team which was hard because I only saw my girls three months out of the year (at St. Joe Academy in St. Louis).”

But Maurer said she understands that one of the most important things about coaching and having a program be successful is the building of relationships with your players.

“The bigger thing is building those relationships with the players because if you know who they are as people, you know how to push their buttons and push them harder,” she said.

As Maurer continues her third season on the bench at Bradley, she sees great things for the program and recognizes that she is only at the beginning of where she wants to be.

Having three of the top seniors in the Missouri Valley Conference helps out as well, as Maurer said she feels very connected to this group and is very appreciative of all that they’ve done.

“Anytime you can have a fifth year senior and someone who has gone through all the change here, you’ve got a lot of focus along with the two other seniors,” Maurer said. “They (the seniors) have a sense of urgency in that they know their time here at Bradley is running out, so they are hungry to end on the highest note possible.”

Maurer said she feels something special coming for this group, which includes a possible run to the MVC tournament.

“I truly believe that this team will get to the MVC tournament,” she said. “I believe so heavily in this team. The whole department, all the coaches, and all the fans are behind this team 100 percent and feel that this is a very special team.”

As for her future as the Bradley coach, Maurer doesn’t want to go anywhere else anytime soon.

“I certainly hope to stay here for a long time and I am incredibly happy to be apart of the Bradley family,” she said. “I can’t see myself any where else especially because I feel that we have all of the tools to be successful for a long time.”

With a new sense of urgency and will to win, the Bradley volleyball team is on the upswing led by Maurer, and things can only go up from here.