DURHAM, N.C. – Duke volleyball head coach Jolene Nagel is pleased to announce the addition of Tara Hittle to the Blue Devil staff. Hittle will serve as an assistant coach, aiding in all aspects of the program including recruiting, practice planning, match preparation, scheduling and team travel.
“It gives me great pleasure to announce Tara Hittle as our new assistant volleyball coach,” said Nagel. “I’ve known Tara since her recruiting process as an athlete then followed her playing career and I was extremely excited to see that she had chosen coaching as a career. Tara’s playing and coaching experience coupled with her teaching background make her an ideal addition to our staff, while her warm and engaging personality will complement the personnel in our program as well as serve as an asset on the recruiting trail. I look forward to working with Tara daily as we strive to cement Duke Volleyball’s status among the nation’s best programs”
A former NCAA Division I student-athlete and professional volleyball player, Hittle also brings ample experience as a both a coach and a recruiter. She spent the past season as an assistant coach at Portland State, helping the Vikings to their first 20-win season since 2013 while helping guide four Vikings to All-Big Sky Conference honors.
Before her arrival at Portland State, Hittle spent the 2016 campaign as a member of the Dartmouth coaching staff. Prior to her time in Hanover, N.H., Hittle served as a high school and club volleyball coach in her home state of Colorado. She was the head volleyball coach at Valor Christian High School from 2014-15 and Doherty High School from 2011-14. Hittle led Doherty to the 2012 state championship and was named 2012 Colorado Coach of the Year.
From 2011-16, Hittle was also the head coach of the Colorado Juniors Volleyball Club, leading her squad to two Colorado Crossroads Championships as well as a second-place finish at the 2016 National Tournament. She successfully guided her team members through the collegiate recruiting process, sending 100 percent of her players to the next level.
Before embarking on her coaching career, Hittle participated in both volleyball and basketball at the University of Hawaii, graduating with a degree in physical education and health in 2009. A four-time letterwinner, she remains in the school’s volleyball record book for both career digs (4th | 1,315) and digs per game (7th | 2.83). Following her collegiate career, Hittle then played professionally for the Volleyball Franches-Montagnes in Switzerland during the 2010-11 season.
Duke finished the 2017 campaign with a 19-12 (11-9 ACC) record, placing three Blue Devils on All-ACC teams in Cadie Bates (All-ACC 2nd Team), Summer Brown (All-ACC Freshman Team) and Payton Schwantz (All-ACC Freshman Team).