Sep. 1—The 2021 Class 1 state volleyball championship banner was unveiled at Miller High School on Tuesday after a Miller Cardinals win in their home opener against Spokane.
Once the court was cleared, there was an announcement for head coach Tamra Landers to make her way to the center of the court. She was then met by Missouri State High School Activities Association representative Davine Davis, who presented the MSHSAA Volleyball Coach of the Year award to Landers.
When asked what this award will mean to the small community of Miller, Landers said, "When you build a tradition and you continue to win, these girls work hard, receiving an award like this is humbling. I appreciate the support of the community."
Being chosen as the MSHSAA Class 1 Volleyball Coach of the Year is typical when a state champion team wins state championships. But the honor presented to Miller on Tuesday night was given to a single volleyball coach for all classes — small through large.
Additionally, Landers has also been recognized by the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) as Missouri Volleyball Coach of the Year. She has also been honored by her peers by earning the 2021-22 Missouri High school Volleyball Coaches Association (MHSVCA) Class 1 coaching award.
Coach Landers has been the head volleyball coach in Miller since the 2005-06 season. Prior to that she was the assistant coach under Kennetta LaSalle from 1995-2005.
Landers, a 1990 Miller graduate, attended Missouri Southern before securing her undergraduate degree from Missouri State. She then returned to Miller to teach, and her duties included helping Kennetta LaSalle in volleyball.
"Coach LaSalle basically taught me how to play and how to coach," Landers said. "We've been the only two volleyball head coaches at Miller."
During the 2021 season, Landers — along with assistant coach Nikole Reynolds — led a seasoned group of athletes to Miller volleyball's first state championship appearance and won it in just three sets to break the opponent Gideon's 77-set winning streak.
The Lady Cardinals ended the season on a win with a 34-3-1 record.
One might think the Cardinals are due for a "rebuilding season," but they have already begun the 2022 campaign with first-place finish in the Verona Tournament. The Cardinals return six seniors this season.