By Gene Phelps
Laurie Bishop was excited and honored this spring when she received notification she had been selected to coach in this week’s annual Mississippi Association of Coaches All-Star Volleyball Game.
Imagine Bishop’s surprise when she learned a few months later she had been selected to coach in this week’s annual MAC All-Star Tennis Tournament, too.
“It was quite interesting when I got the email about tennis,” Tupelo High’s volleyball and tennis coach said. “I thought, did they get this right?”
Bishop contacted the MAC to make sure they knew she had been selected to coach both all-star events: volleyball (Wednesday) and tennis (Thursday).
“They said it would be fine,” she said. “I don’t know if they’ve ever done this before.”
Bishop, who will be assisted by her husband, Braden, in volleyball, will practice her North all-star volleyball team tonight and Wednesday morning prior to the 6 p.m. match at Millsaps College in Jackson.
Her tennis assistant coach, East Webster’s Pam Champion, will practice the North tennis team Wednesday prior to its 1 p.m. Thursday matches at Bridges Tennis Center in Jackson.
“A lot of decisions have to be made when coaching volleyball,” Bishop said. “Tennis is not as involved. You don’t have a rotation. Everybody plays singles and doubles.”
The two Northeast Mississippi players – both rising seniors – on the North volleyball roster are Tupelo’s Georgeanna Bowen and Starkville’s Khristian Carr.
“It will be exciting to coach (volleyball) with and against players we’ve played against,” Bishop said. “The South team is very talented.”
The North leads the volleyball series 5-4, but lost last year’s match 2-1. The match will be streamed live at www.mscoaches.com.
The North tennis roster is loaded with area players who graduated in May: Samuel Butler, East Webster; Robert Jones, Mooreville; Brandon Nhek, Corinth; Mark Robbins, New Albany; Robert Thompson, Tupelo; Emily Carter, Tupelo; Ivy Roberts, Pontotoc; Kara Rose, Oxford and Emily Turner, Starkville.