Former CSI volleyball player and longtime assistant coach Melissa Quiles has been named CSI’s newest head coach, taking the reigns on an interim basis for the 2010 season after the departure of four-year coach Rose Ruesing, who announced her resignation a week ago. Quiles, who doubles as an assistant coach for the women’s softball team and was also a standout in that sport will continue in that capacity as well. A search for a permanent replacement will commence at the conclusion of the season.
“We are very fortunate to have a returning assistant volleyball coach and four year CSI volleyball player in Melissa Quiles in place to accept the appointment,” said Vernon Mummert, Director of Athletics and Recreation. “With Coach Quiles’ knowledge of the game and her familiarity with the CUNYAC volleyball competition, our team should not miss a beat this year.”
The appointment of Quiles to the position of head coach is well deserved. A four-year standout for the Dolphins from 2001-04, Quiles was a two-year captain and a versatile part of the lineup, totalling 149 kills, 149 service aces, and 566 digs. Quiles immediately joined the sidelines in 2005, serving one year as assistant coach under former head coach Jason Fein before spending the next four years as Ruesing’s top assistant.
“This is an opportunty that I am very excited about and that I have been waiting for,” commented Quiles. “When I was a student-athlete I always looked up to my coaches and thought that coaching would be something I could lend my spirit, heart and dedication to. It will be very exciting to be able to run the program the way I envision it can be.”
The Dolphins will have a seemingly tough task ahead. The team celebrated its finest season in memory two seasons ago in a 16-12 CUNYAC semifinalist campaign that ended with an ECAC Tournament berth, the first in team history. But the team fell to 12-15 a year ago and graduated top-player Alba Basha, the program’s back-to-back CUNYAC first team all-star. The team also said goodbye to versatile senior Carmella Lubrano, and defensive specialists Elyse Santiago and Fiosa Begai. In all, the team sports four returning players, among them standouts Joanna Tepedino and Danielle Ponsiglione, who double on on the softball diamond.
“We have a nice nucleus coming back, but we will be challenged with recruiting another round of student-athletes who will be committed to CSI Volleyball and help make us better both in the short and long term,” Quiles said. “My goal is to keep the players motivated and dedicated towards being a part of something we intend to make better. We’ll need to keep ourselves focused on our next game and stay excited during the course of the entire season.”
With a focus on recruiting for the future and getting the team to be a cohesive unit in time for the season, Quiles is confident that the road for CSI could be a promising one.
“I see the volleyball team improving every year and building up to what I hope can be a championship unit. I would love to bring that championship banner home to the College, and making volleyball a more well-known and popular sport at CSI.”
Joining Quiles on the sidelines will be the return of Solomon Ramos as a second-year assistant, while volunteer assistants Veronica DeMeglio and Kellie Carnevale, a former two-year player and two-year assistant, will also return to guide the unit.