By Joseph Sykes | Sports Editor
Duquesne is proud to host 16 NCAA-caliber varsity sports and starting next winter, it’s about to make room for the 17th when it welcomes women’s bowling to the fray.
While many details have not yet been named such as the team’s home alley, schedule or roster, the school has found its new head coach in Lancaster-native Jody Fetterhoff. Fetterhoff is making the trek to the Bluff from Adrian College in Michigan where she was the head coach of both the men and women’s bowling teams.
“We are excited to welcome Jody to Duquesne,” senior associate athletic director Phil Racicot said in a press release. Racicot was the one who headed the coaching search in order to find someone suitable to lead the new program. “Her experience as a coach and former student-athlete will be an invaluable asset to establishing our program.”
Fetterhoff is thrilled to come to Pittsburgh to take the reins as the first head coach in Duquesne women’s bowling history.
“It’s really exciting because there are a lot of really great bowlers in Pennsylvania and the surrounding areas like Ohio, Michigan, Virginia and Maryland,” Fetterhoff said. “The department was just looking to add something and bowling is really big in Western Pennsylvania. I’m obviously very excited because it gave me the opportunity to return to Pennsylvania because I’m originally from Lancaster.”
Fetterhoff has 10 years of coaching experience at the collegiate level. At Adrian College, she led her squad to a third place finish at the past two Collegiate Club Championships in turn helping to create one of the most competitive programs in Michigan. Before that, she was an assistant coach at Union College in Barbourville, Kentucky and was head coach at Shippensburg University, her alma mater.
While at Shippensburgh, Fetterhoff focused on studying criminal justice, which she received a degree in back in 2006. She also received her secondary education certificate in history and social sciences in 2008.
At Duquesne, Fetterhoff will be tasked with scouting and recruiting players after she takes the NCAA recruiting test, which is required for all coaches to pass before they are allowed to evaluate student-athletes off-campus. With bowling becoming more and more popular in Western Pennsylvania, Fetterhoff believes recruiting will be easy with the attractiveness of the conference the Dukes will participate in.
“We haven’t announced it yet, but we are looking to join the Northeast Conference, which is a really strong conference when it comes to bowling,” she said. “With that, I think it should be pretty easy to recruit.”
In addition to recruiting, Fetterhoff will have to find a home for the new Dukes program. She is already scoping out locations for the inaugural season, which kicks off Oct. 1 of next year.
“We have only checked out three alleys in the South Hills and we’re looking at some others in the area,” Fetterhoff said. “We’re very fortunate that there are a lot of great bowling alleys [in Pittsburgh]. We are also trying to see which one is the best fit with the shortest drive time. Obviously we don’t want to drive too much to practices.”
While she is still taking the necessary steps to create a solid base for the new bowling program, Fetterhoff isn’t complaining of the heavy workload necessary to get it done.
“We didn’t have opportunities like this when I was in school,” she said. “It’s really grown since I was in college.”