Southside’s Pruden tabbed WDN Coach of the Year

Published 11:06 am Thursday, November 20, 2008

By By BRIAN HAINES, Sports Writer
For coaches it doesn’t always happen right away, and in Elizabeth Pruden’s case it took close to a whole season, but the moment a team finally grasped what a coach has been trying to tell them all year, it’s a joyous occasion.
The message: You are a better team than you think you are. The occasion: The championship game of the Atlantic Conference tournament.
It may have taken a while, but it couldn’t have happened at a better time.
The culmination of Pruden’s season-long teachings finally hit home, probably around the same time the little white Spalding hit the floor for the team’s 25th point in the last game of a three-match sweep against the regular season conference champion Williamston Tigers.
The team got the message, an Atlantic Conference tournament title, a playoff win, and thanks to that, the Seahawks’ skipper got tabbed WDN Volleyball Coach of the Year.
Pruden, Southside’s second-year coach, was also voted the Atlantic Conference Coach of the Year.
Though the Seahawks’ season ended happily, things could have easily gone the other way. After a fast start, Southside began to slide, and after a loss to Perquimans midway through the schedule, the wheels started to come off for the Seahawks. However, thanks to a midseason tuneup, Southside was able to pull together and finish the race.
The turnaround wouldn’t be possible without strong senior leadership, and Pruden said the play of Danielya Whitney, Mandi Harding and Dot Jones was invaluable.