TEMPE – The Sun Devil Beach Volleyball coaching staff is complete after head coach Kristen Rohr has hired Abbie Hughes, a former stand-out beach player, as a second assistant coach.
“We are so excited to round out our coaching staff with Abbie,” Rohr said. “She has a tremendous knowledge and passion for the game and is really excited about taking her coaching to the next level. It was very evident in working camps with her what she would bring to the table. With her playing experience and psychology background, it just brings another element to our program. I think it’s amazing to keep growing our sport and adding women to coaching staffs, so getting the opportunity to mentor and work with someone I coached is going to be a lot of fun!”
Due to a new NCAA rule, beach volleyball is now allotted two full-time assistant coaches. Hughes joins Paul Araiza, who returns to the staff for his third season in Tempe.
In the coaching sphere, Hughes has recently coached for Rob Long at Ohio Valley Beach/P1440. She also ran the developmental summer program for the club that consisted of over 100 players.
Hughes has experience playing beach volleyball in college. She played the last two seasons at Grand Canyon, where Rohr was the head coach. She helped the Lopes to two-straight NCAA Tournament appearances and top-10 finishes. Last season was her final year and she played on the top court all year, earning a 16-4 record. She earned AVCA All-America honors for her first time. For the pair’s efforts, they won the AVCA Top Flight award, one of 12 in the nation. In 2022, she went 24-9 on courts three and four. With strong work in the classroom as well, she was a CSC Academic All-American.
Prior to GCU, Hughes played at Florida International for three years, both indoor and beach volleyball. On the indoor side, she compiled over 2,000 assists.
Hughes has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and is currently pursuing a master’s degree. Her parents are John and Christie and she has one younger brother, Jake.