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UNW Volleyball coach Beth Wilmeth’s ultimate goals, and how it helps put trophies in the trophy case.

The University of Northwestern – St. Paul volleyball team has been a force to be reckoned with the last decade, filling their trophy case to the brim. With accolades ranging from Conference Championships, Final Four appearances and All-Americans, there has been no shortage of success on the hardwood.

Northwester Eagles finished their 2023 season as Conference and Region champions.

What truly sets UNW apart from other successful volleyball programs is the heart behind everything they do, both on the court and off, to shine their light for Christ. As Coach Wilmeth puts it, “Our goal is to always reflect Christ, and to honor Him in how we conduct ourselves on the court.”

Head Coach Beth Wilmeth: University of Northwestern – St. Paul Women’s Volleyball

One of the biggest ways this is evident in their game, is the ‘honor call’. If a UNW player touches a ball as it goes out and a referee does not catch it, that player signals to them that it was tipped. This has been an area of confusion for opposing teams and spectators alike, especially when it happens on a national stage. Why give up a much-needed point, with the game on the line, when the refs couldn’t even catch it?

In their Sweet Sixteen match two weeks ago, the Eagles were fighting tooth and nail to make a comeback after going down 0-2 to UW-Whitewater. Their fight and drive were obvious, but they knew it was an uphill battle. The tension in the room was palpable, but there was a sudden shift. Hannah Gadient stepped up, with no hesitation, and confessed a tip. Even in the heat of competition, they continue to reflect their faith and core value of integrity.

From that moment on, the game was fully in the Eagle’s control. Their composure and reliance on Christ turned out to be the difference between an untimely loss, and the ability to continue to use their talents for God on an even bigger stage. An electric reverse-sweep secured them the Regional title and a spot in the Elite Eight.

UNW Volleyball alum Kate Rogers says it best: “We have a goal of glorifying God in how we play, and to use the talents He’s given us to put it on display.”

The Eagles finished their season as Conference and Region Champions, with four All-Americans and multiple national awards. With the success and culture that UNW volleyball has built over the years, one is prone to assume that it will not only continue but grow in the process.