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Kathy Gregory, Karch Kiraly, Doug Partie Charter Members of So Cal Indoor VB Hall of Fame

Longtime UC Santa Barbara women's volleyball coach Kathy Gregory is among 25 in the inaugural class of inductees to the Southern California Indoor Volleyball Hall of Fame.

Other charter members with Santa Barbara ties include Karch Kiraly and Doug Partie. Kiraly is an alum of Santa Barbara High and Partie attended Dos Pueblos. Both won NCAA titles at UCLA and were teammates on the 1988 gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic team.

Gregory, who retired from coaching following the 2012 season, guided the UCSB program to 882 wins and 27 NCAA Tournament appearances in her 38 seasons. Along with Stanford, Penn State and Nebraska, her Gauchos were one of four programs to advance to the first 26 NCAA Tournaments. 

"This is a great honor for me," Gregory said. "Southern California is at the epicenter of the volleyball world and to be part of the first class of Hall of Fame members is incredibly special."

Gregory, who began her coaching career in 1975, guided UCSB to three NCAA Elite Eight appearances (1997, 1999 and 2000) and two other Sweet 16s (1998 and 2002). She was named AVCA National Coach of the Year in 1993, the year her team began ranked No. 17 in the national polls and finished No. 4 with a record of 28-4.

In addition to her 1993 national honor, Gregory was a four-time AVCA West Region Coach of the Year and a seven-time Big West Conference Coach of the Year.  In 2002, the Gauchos set a school record with a 23-match winning streak, went 18-0 in league play and finished with a 30-3 overall record, the best in school history. 

From 2003-05, Gregory's teams won three consecutive Big West titles – the longest run in school history – and she was named Coach of the Year following each season.  During a six-year span (2002-07) UCSB recorded a sparkling 68-14 (.829) record in Big West play. 

Gregory's success in volleyball was not only on the sidelines, but inside the lines. She is considered one of the true pioneers of the beach volleyball game and was named Women's Beach Tournament Player of the Year in 1976, 1977, 1978, 1981 and 1983. In 1996 she became the senior-most player in the nation to earn her AAA Beach rating, the highest mark a player can attain on the sand.  Gregory was named a USVBA All-American for the 16th time at the National Championships in Dallas in 1996.

Her competitive career was not limited to the sand as she served as captain of the professional San Diego Breakers of the Indoor Volleyball Association – where she was a teammate of basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain – and played on the 1968 U.S. Pan American and World Game squads. On Oct. 21, 1989, Gregory became the third woman – joining U.S. Olympians Flo Hyman and Jane Ward – to be enshrined into the Volleyball Hall of Fame. In 1997 she became the 12th woman inducted into the United States Volleyball Association Hall of Fame. In 2003, she was named to the USVBA's All-Era Team from 1949-1979. 

In alphabetical order, here are the 25 members of the first ever Southern California Indoor Volleyball Hall of Fame:

Andy Banachowski
Laurel Brassey-Iversen
Craig Buck
Deitre Collins-Parker
Tara Cross-Battle
Bob Ctvrtlik
Marv Dunphy
Dusty Dvorak
Rolf Engen
Debbie Green
Kathy Gregory
Bryan Ivie
Karch Kiracly
Ricci Luyties
Chris Marlowe
Misty May-Treanor
Kim Oden
Mike O'Hara
Doug Partie
Al Scates
Gene Selznick
Sinjin Smith
Jeff Stork
Steve Timmons
Paula Weishoff

The Hall of Fame will be housed at the American Sports Centers (ASC) in Anaheim where the USA Men's and Women's National Teams train. The induction ceremony is Sunday night, May 7 and a permanent exhibit will be housed at ASC.

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