Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Coach Yankus picks up 100th win

Tuesday, November 9, 2021
SEMO’s Volleyball team talks with Head Coach, Julie Yankus and Assistant Coach, Matt Stolz about strategies for the game during their five set loss to UT Martin on Sept. 29 at Houck Field House in Cape Girardeau.
Photo by Hannah Wolfe

SEMO women’s volleyball coach, Julie Yankus, reached her 100th Ohio Valley Conference win Oct. 22 against Tennessee Tech.

Yankus gives credit to her players in regards to the 100 wins.

“It’s not about me, it's about the players 100%. They are the ones that score all the points. They are the ones doing all the hard work to win each set,” Yankus said.

Liberero Tara Beilsmith was aware of the potential of Tennessee Tech being Yankus’ 100th win prior to the game.

“I feel like we always want to win for her, but knowing that this win would be 100 wins for our coach was motivation,” Beilsmith said.

Yankus started her coaching career as an assistant coach at Georgia State University from 2004-2006. Then she became the assistant coach and eventually the associate head coach at Southern Illinois University- Carbondale from 2006 until 2011. Finally, she was hired here at SEMO in 2011.

She is currently in her 11th year as the head volleyball coach for SEMO.

“I actually was doing the math the other day as I was applying for a committee for the NCAA and realized that I've been coaching collegially for 18 years now,” Yankus said.

Junior Zoey Beasley said she enjoys playing for Yankus.

“She really just brings a different type of energy. And she's just super uplifting. She really critiques us when we need it, and she's a good leader,” Beasley said.

Beasley and Beilsmith expressed they are extremely grateful to play for Yankus.

“She makes it really easy to want to play for her and for my team, and she just pushes us all the time and is our biggest cheerleader,” Beilsmith said.

Yankus strives to form a relationship with her players off the volleyball court.

“I think it's really important to have a personal relationship with every player, and I love to joke around with my team and have fun with them,” Yankus said. “If I know they had a big test that day or the day before, I always ask, ‘How did that go?’ When someone's not feeling that great, I'm always checking in on them. I really try to find ways to interact with each and every one of them on a personal level.”

The next time Yankus and her players take the court at Houck Stadium is Nov. 12 against Morehead State at 6 p.m.