Head Coach Mary Schindler
In 2018, Mary Schindler will begin her 14th season as the head coach of the Tarleton Volleyball program. She was also named the Senior Woman Administrator in the summer of 2018.
Since the decade mark of her Tarleton career, Schindler has continued to build the program she once played for into a national powerhouse for the first time in school history.
For the longtime TexAnn, the 10th year of her career will go down as the most memorable one of her career as she guided Tarleton State to the first Lone Star Conference Tournament Championship in school history and the first appearance for Tarleton in the NCAA postseason. Schindler's TexAnns won their NCAA playoff debut with a 3-0 sweep over No. 20 Metro State and finished the regular season receiving votes in the final American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) national poll for the first time in school history.
Her TexAnns received much recognition for their efforts on the court and in the classroom in 2014, led by third-team All-America freshman Hailey Roberts. Roberts earned All-America recognition after being named first-team all-region and all-conference as well as garnering the LSC Freshman of the Year award. Roberts also became the first TexAnn player to be named an AVCA Player of the Week. Tarleton's Kenya Alexander, who led the nation in blocks, was named first-team all-region and all-conference to go along with the LSC Defensive Player of the Year. Katie Covell and Kaitlyn White earned all-conference accolades as well. White was also academic all-conference and was named an LSC Scholar-Athlete, making her the first volleyball player in school history to earn that award.
She followed up the decade mark with another record-setting campaign in 2015, as her TexAnns went 27-7 and 15-1 in Lone Star Conference play to secure the first regular season conference title in school history and host the league’s postseason tournament. Her 2015 team was led by the school’s first AVCA all-region players, Hailey Roberts and Kenya Alexander, while Roberts went on to lead the nation in kills and kills per set and earn AVCA first-team All-America and the D2CCA South Central Region Player of the Year honors.
The good times continued to roll in 2016 as Schindler continued to lead the TexAnns to new heights as Tarleton ended the season ranked No. 25 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association national poll. It’s the first time Tarleton has been ranked in school history. The TexAnns tied the school record with 27 wins and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament for the second time in three seasons.
Hailey Roberts continued her domination of the league as Schindler’s star made history once again as a junior by taking over the school record in kills. Under Schindler’s guidance, Roberts also was an All-American for the third straight season and the D2CCA National Player of the Year. Joining Roberts with the accolades was Jordyn Keamo, who was an all-region and honorable mention AVCA All-America selection as well as the Lone Star Conference Setter of the Year.
Program standards continued to be set in 2017 as Schindler led Tarleton to the LSC regular season and LSC Tournament championships, marking the first time in school history the TexAnns won both titles in the same season. They also reached new heights on the national level by being ranked in every week of the season in the AVCA national top-25 poll.
After the first 13 seasons of her career, Schindler has compiled a 263-154 overall record with the TexAnns, having made the Lone Star Conference Championship Tournament in 11 of her 13 years - including eight straight postseason berths and two tournament championships, the first of which came on the strength of two incredible fifth-set rallies over West Texas A&M and Angelo State. She also led Tarleton to its first four NCAA tournament appearances from 2014-17.
In 2012, Schindler led her TexAnns to then-new heights - including the best record in school history at 23-9, the highest regular season finish in Lone Star Conference play (3rd) and the first ever regional rankings as Tarleton debuted at No. 9 in the final poll of the regular season. Tarleton qualified for the LSC Championship Tournament for the seventh time in school history and sixth time under Schindler. The TexAnns advanced to the LSC Semifinals for the third consecutive season.
The TexAnns in 2011 finished the season at 20-14, securing the No. 4 seed in the tournament and Tarleton's third 20-win season since joining the NCAA in 1994. All three 20-win seasons have come under the instruction of Schindler. She took the TexAnns to the Lone Star Conference Tournament semifinals after earning a 3-1 victory over Texas Woman's November 10, 2011. She guided the TexAnns to a 23-10 record in 2010 and a trip to the Lone Star Conference tournament in Canyon. On top of that, the 2010 Tarleton volleyball had the best start in school history with a 9-0 record and set a school record with 23 wins on the season.
Following a four-year playing career with the purple and white from 1999-2002, Schindler made the transition from player to coach, becoming a graduate assistant under then head coach Hadley Foster. The former TexAnn volleyball player then took over the program as the school’s 19th head volleyball coach in April 2005. Schindler had been the interim head coach for three months before being named the head coach.
Schindler spent her first season as head coach guiding the TexAnns to a 16-17 overall record before going 14-15 in 2006. In just her second season as head coach, Schindler’s team earned a trip to the LSC Tournament for only the second time in school history.
The TexAnns went 13-16 overall in 2007 with a 5-7 mark in LSC play. Despite the sub-.500 record in conference action, the TexAnns finished in eighth place to earn another trip to the LSC Tournament.
While the 2006 and 2007 seasons provided its own excitement, 2008 turned out to be Schindler’s then-best season yet as a head coach. Her recruiting and hard work really showed as the team went on to record the 22 victories. The 2008 season had many highs that included the TexAnns defeating Abilene Christian for the first time in 10 tries and Schindler’s team reeled off eight straight wins from Sept. 23 thru Oct. 16 for the program’s second longest streak ever. Finally, after recording 10 conference victories, Schindler was rewarded with Tarleton’s first-ever LSC Head Coach of the Year Award.
She has had six players earn 10 top honors in the Lone Star Conference over the past six seasons, beginning with Nikki McNorton being named the Defensive Player of the Year in 2012. In 2013, Stacie Murrah and Emily Klein were named the Co-Offensive Player of the Year and Libero of the Year, respectively. Kenya Alexander became Schindler's second LSC Defensive Player of the Year in 2014 while Hailey Roberts was named the Freshman of the Year in the league. Roberts became the first player in Tarleton history to claim multiple superlative awards from the Lone Star Conference by locking up the 2014 Freshman of the Year, 2015 and 2017 Offensive Player of the Year, and the 2017 Player of the Year award. She was joined by teammate Jordyn Keamo in 2016-17, who earned back-to-back LSC Setter of the Year awards.
As a player for the TexAnns, Schindler totaled 463 kills and a .139 hitting percentage in her career. She had 1,891 assists and 146 service aces, as well.
Schindler earned Lone Star Conference South Division Honorable Mention honors after she recorded 288 kills in 2002 and had a .127 hitting percentage. She also had 278 assists and recorded 225 digs and 61 service aces. As a junior in 2001, Schindler recorded 505 assists, 75 kills and 28 total blocks as she split time between setting and playing the right-side hitter positions. She was the TexAnns primary setter in 2000, starting in 31 matches and leading the team with 968 assists and 52 service aces.
She is a graduate of Bandera High School after receiving several honors during her prep career while participating in volleyball, basketball, softball and golf. She has a son, Ethan.