Wando High School volleyball coach Alexis Glover reached an unimaginable milestone on Tuesday night, notching her 1,000th career victory when the Warriors beat West Ashley 2-0.
Glover becomes the only high school coach in state history to reach 1,000 career victories in one sport. Former Terrell’s Bay basketball coach Taft Watson, who died earlier this year at the age of 96, won 1,481 combined games as the school's boys and girls coach.
The national career record for wins in high school volleyball is 1,832, held by Jeff Magelssen of Michigan.
A 1977 Bishop England graduate, Glover says she never thought she would stay in the coaching business long enough to achieve such lofty heights in the profession.
“I played for Kathy Blackmon at Bishop England and I thought it was so cool when she won her 500th match,” said Glover, who is in her 37th year of coaching. “I thought that would be a good goal for me, to get to 500. Once I got to 500, I was still having fun and I just kept going. I’m having fun to this day.”
Glover came to Wando in 1986 after starting her coaching career at Spartanburg High in 1981, fresh out of the University of South Carolina. At Wando, Glover replaced coaching legend Linda White, who won three state titles before moving on as Clemson’s head coach.
“My main goal coming to Wando was not to mess up what coach White had built, to continue the winning tradition,” Glover says. “The program already was one of the best in the state and I just wanted to keep it going.”
Wando’s program certainly has continued to build. Glover has won three state titles (1993, 2014, 2015) and has had eight state runner-up finishes. Her teams have played in five consecutive state championship matches.
Glover says her success at Wando can be attributed to the strength of the program, the athletes and her coaching staff.
“I’ve been standing on the sidelines for all 1,000 wins,” she said. “We’ve had some great players come through here. I have had great support and great coaches to help me. I don’t play. The girls play and the girls win. I just try to prepare them for success and we’ve been very fortunate.”
Glover and her husband of 29 years, Cregg, have raised three children. Two are in coaching now and all three have left home. Glover says raising three children and coaching was difficult. Now, with an empty nest, the coach sees no reason to stop coaching.
“I still love the game and I still love the girls,” she said. “The day I wake up and I’m not excited about volleyball, I will hang it up. But I honestly still have a lot of passion for coaching. I still go to coaching clinics and I am still learning.
“It doesn’t seem like it’s been 37 years. Time really does fly when you’re having fun and I still have fun doing this. Besides, I don’t know what I would do without coaching.”
Dorman coach Paula Kirkland, who also began coaching in 1981, also has more than 900 career wins. Ashley Hall coach Franny Slay has amassed 760 career coaching victories.