After a dozen years at the helm and three state championships, Nation Ford volleyball coach Carrie Christian is stepping away.
Christian, one of the most successful coaches in the brief history of Nation Ford, announced publicly that she was stepping down on her personal Facebook page Sunday.
“It is time sadly,” Christian said.
Christian started a non-profit four years ago that she has been volunteering for since it began called Families Forward Charlotte. Since the founding of it, she has been putting in 40-hours a week as a volunteer. She was recently hired full-time for the non-profit and with a family including three kids, she said it is hard to devote the time needed to the program.
“At the end of the season I thought I had one more season in me, but that changed in December when I was hired by the non-profit,” she said. “When it is a paid position it is harder to leave for the three to five hours a day that is needed for practice.”
Christian was head coach at Nation Ford for 12 seasons winning three state championships in 2010, 2018 and 2019 and putting together a 354-115-10 record at the school. She has been in coaching 21 years and said the relationships with the girls on the team is what she has cherished the most.
“I love the sport, but it is the relationship I built with the girls and the alumni and watching them grow and become strong young women I am proud of,” she said.
Christian fostered a family atmosphere around volleyball at Nation Ford and had multiple players return to watch matches, but also become part of her coaching staff over the years.
“It shows how much of a family feel we had,” she said.
In her dozen years there, Christian turned Nation Ford into a top ranked national program that was in the top 25 nationally on multiple occasions. In 2018, she set a school record for number of wins with 46, only to break it the next year with 48 wins. In the past three seasons, Christian had a 117-15-2 record.
While her time at Nation Ford has etched a lifetime of memories, Christian said there were too many good ones to pick out just one. Whether it was the team’s trip to Florida to play in a tournament or teammates singing and dancing on bus rides, Christian said she is forever grateful for the memories.
“We had so much fun and such a great family feel with the program,” she said. “We had a really good time. Each group was so different.”
Christian said she feels like her days coaching at the high school level are behind her, but you never say never. She added she would like to coach her 4-year-old one day at the recreation level.
“Hopefully, my daughter will play volleyball,” she said.
Mac Banks: email@example.com, @fortprep