Josh Falcone – General Assignment Reporter –
The Southern Connecticut State University volleyball and softball teams both have been a force to reckon with and that has to due in large part to both teams’ head coach, Lisa Barbaro.
Barbaro has been coaching the softball and volleyball teams for nine years and has numerous winning seasons. The softball team is 256-145-5 in the eight seasons Barbaro has coached the team.
Barbaro was a multi-sport athlete at the Morgan School in Clinton, Conn., including basketball, softball, and volleyball. She was a member of the 2000 and 2001 Owls volleyball team. Before beginning her coaching career here at Southern, Barbaro coached the Branford (CT) High School volleyball team for two seasons and coached the team to back-to-back Southern Connecticut Conference Hammonasset Division championships.
Barbaro coached the teams to strong finishes the past three seasons including a 42-win 2010 campaign and 35-win season in 2011. This past spring, the SCSU softball team had a program record 43-win season. In the school’s first-ever College World Series appearance in May, the Owls defeated the St. Joseph’s of Indiana Pumas. Barbaro was named the Northeast-10 Conference Coach of the Year and the team was ranked number six in the final national poll.
The team reached the NCAA Regional Final in each of the past three seasons. The softball team will look to continue this strong showing next spring.
Barbaro said the team has found success by recruiting good athletes that have a positive attitude on the court or field but also in the classroom.
“We want team players,” Barbaro said. “And players that are working towards the same common goal.”
Barbaro said that by having athletes that have a shared positive attitude, it brings the team success, and makes coaching them easier.
The volleyball team has also been consistently successful under Barbaro’s coaching, including a winning season in each of the past four seasons, two trips to the Northeast-10 tournament in 2009 and 2011, and over 60 player selections to the Northeast-10 Conference Commissioners Honor Roll. The winning has continued into this season as the team won 13 matches in a row in September and after producing a four-game winning streak last week, the team secured themselves another winning campaign.
Barbaro said that looking ahead to the remainder of the season that the volleyball squad is concentrating on one game at a time.
“We’re shooting forward and working our way to hopefully compete in the NEC-10 tournament,” she said. “And then make it to the NCAA tournament.”