Two new coaches will be joining the ranks at Laurens District High School in 2018-2019. Erin Fleming will be taking the reins of the Raider volleyball program this fall after previous head coach, Caroline Culbertson, resigned. Fleming has been the Head Volleyball Coach at Lake Highland Preparatory Academy since 2011, where she also served as the Leadership Development and Student Activities Coordinator. Fleming was Coach of the Year in 2012 and led the Lake Highland team to the State Championship game in 2012, 2016, and 2017. As a player, Fleming was Co-Captain of the 2004, 2005, and 2006 Lake Highland State Championship Women’s Varsity Volleyball Teams and was the 2007 Lake Highland Prep Female Athlete of the Year. In college, Fleming was a member of three (3) SEC Volleyball Championship teams at the University of Florida, where she was also an SEC Honor Roll student from 2007 – 2011.
There will also be a change in softball for 2018-2019. Michaela Smith, a 2015 Graduate from LDHS and a former Raider softball player, will be foregoing her final year of softball eligibility at Anderson University to take the reins of the Raider program. Former Raider Head Coach, Butch Clark, said, “You will not find a harder working and better student of the game.” Clark added that he would rank Smith in the top five (5) of his all-time players. Ed Murray, District Athletic Director, said, “We added Coach Smith to our interview list at the last minute. We thought we might be able to recruit her as a possible assistant coach for the program. Instead, she greatly impressed us with her preparedness, her maturity, and her grasp of the needs of the program in Laurens. After some discussion, we made the decision that she was the best option for the long-term future of the program.” Smith, a biology major, hopes to add a science teaching position to her LCSD 55 workload in the 2019-2020 school year.
In her career at LDHS, Smith helped lead the Lady Raiders to a 24-6 record and a Region I-AAAA Championship in 2014. She was named an All-County player in both 2011 and 2012. She earned seven individual MVP awards from the National Softball Association during her travel ball career and garnered Elite Weight Lifting Awards from 2011-13. Smith was selected as a 2013 Athletic and Leadership Standout for Female Athletes at LDHS and represented the school at the South Carolina High School League Leadership Summit. She was also the recipient of the 2014 Wendy’s Heisman Award for Outstanding Female Athlete at LDHS.