Bucknell names top assistant, recruiting coordinator Allison as new head coach
LEWISBURG, Pa. -- Bucknell director of athletics and recreation John Hardt announced Tuesday that Anna Allison will become the next head coach of the Bison volleyball program. Allison has spent the last eight years as the top assistant and recruiting coordinator for Bucknell and has mentored some of the program’s top setters during her tenure.
In 2006, Allison helped guide former Bucknell setter Shannon Pitsch to a school single-season record total in assists (1,199), which ranked first in the Patriot League. Pitsch, who was a 2008 All-Patriot League selection and a two-time Patriot League All-Tournament Team honoree, went on to claim the career record (3,597) under Allison’s tutelage, as well.
More recently, Allison guided Kat Tauscher and Meghan Wentzel to top-10 rankings in the Patriot League in assists during the 2012 campaign.
“I feel truly honored to have the opportunity to lead our women’s volleyball program,” Allison said. “Bucknell is a special place and has the highest regard for the scholar-athlete model.
“I am excited to have the chance to elevate our volleyball program to a perennial championship contender and to be able to provide a positive and enriching experience to our student-athletes. We will need to get back to the basics -- build a strong foundation, raise our volleyball IQ -- but I know that our women are ready to move forward,” Allison said.
“I am very pleased that Anna Allison will be remaining in the Bison Athletics family as the next head coach of the volleyball program,” Hardt said. “Anna [Allison] has been a vital member of the staff as an assistant coach for the past eight years, and I am delighted that she will now get the chance to lead the program. Her familiarity with Bucknell and our scholar-athlete tradition should make for a very smooth transition.”
A native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, and a member of a prominent volleyball family, Allison is a 2004 graduate of Oral Roberts, where she was one of the top setters in the Golden Eagles' history. Allison was a First Team All-Mid Continent Conference selection three times and was named Setter of the Year in 2000 and 2002. As a senior in 2002, she shattered the Oral Roberts career assists record as well as the Mid-Con career service aces record.
Oral Roberts won four consecutive league titles and played in four NCAA tournaments during her playing days.
A two-time team captain, Allison completed degrees in advertising and marketing communications as well. She completed her Master’s degree in education-athletic administration from Northcentral in December 2012.
A lifelong student of the sport, Allison's enthusiasm and commitment to the game was influenced by her father, Antonio Carlos Moreno, who played for the Brazilian national team for 16 years and participated in four Olympic Games. Anna's twin brother, Carlos, was an All-American setter who earned AVCA Player of the Year honors while leading BYU to the 2004 NCAA national championship.
In 2003-04, Allison served as a graduate assistant coach at Oral Roberts, where she worked closely with the Golden Eagles' setters and assisted in scouting and recruiting. Throughout her undergraduate career she coached the ORU Club team, featuring players aged 12 to 18, as well as the 16-18 Tulsa Volleyball Club.
In Brazil, Allison was a regular coach at the S.P. Volleyball Camp and has worked as director, recruiting manager and coach with the Moreno Corp. During the summers, she has served on the staff of the Gold Medal Square Camp as well as the Bentley College Camp.
Now the fourth head coach in program history, Allison takes over a team that went 9-20 overall and 3-11 in the Patriot League last season. The Bison advanced to the NCAA tournament in 1998 and earned a repeat trip in 2000. Allison takes over for Cindy Opalski, who stepped down in November after 23 seasons as head coach.