Margot Royer-Johnson | Head Coach
Margot Royer-Johnson, was named the fifth head volleyball coach in Providence College history in August of 2000 and now enters her 17th season with the Friars. Providence enters its third season back in the BIG EAST after competing in the league from 1977-2001. The Friars last played in the America East Conference for four seasons (2010-13).
In her first season with the Friars, Royer-Johnson led the squad to a 9-1 start and an overall record of 16-15 while competing in the BIG EAST.
The 2001 campaign proved to be a test of the team's mettle as the Friars played a tough non-conference schedule combined with the always strong BIG EAST Conference schedule. PC finished with a 6-20 overall record as Friars' outside hitter Sarah Katinger earned All-BIG EAST honors. In 2002, Providence ran into similar obstacles as the team finished with a 2-29 mark.
Providence College volleyball became an independent program in 2003, but continued to play a slate of challenging national opponents. In 2005, the Friars posted a 7-28 record with a squad among the youngest in the country. Consisting of eight freshmen, two sophomores and two seniors, the Friars posted their highest win total since 2000.
Royer-Johnson led the 2006 squad, comprised of two juniors, seven sophomores, and three freshmen, to a 14-win season. The following season (2007) saw the Friars win 19 games, which was the highest total since 1997 when the squad recorded 21 wins. In 2008, the team posted a 15-20 record and followed that up with a 10-16 record in 2009.
The 2010 campaign saw the Friars compete as members of the America East conference for the first time, posting a 10-23 mark with a 2-10 record in league play. That same season, Royer-Johnson mentored junior Lauren Fletcher to second team All-America East honors. In 2011, the Friars posted an 8-22 mark with a 2-10 conference record. Senior Lauren Fletcher received First Team All-America East honors, while 10 Friars were named to the America East Fall Honor Roll. In 2012, the season was highlighted by Cassie Muzzonigro setting the all-time career digs record with 1,787.
In Providence's final year in the America East (2013), the Friars improved from the 2012 season with a record of 12-20. Royer-Johnson coached freshmen Michelle Cruz and Kayla Fitzgerald to the America East All-Rookie Team. Off the court, 10 student-athletes were named to the America East Fall Honor Roll.
In 2014, the Friars competed in their first season back in the BIG EAST Conference. The team had a strong stretch towards the end of the season with victories over DePaul (3-2) and Georgetown (3-0).
Royer-Johnson coached the Friars to a 10-22 record for the 2015 season. The Friars posted an eight-match winning streak, taking 21-consecutive sets.
In the summer of 2008, Royer-Johnson was selected to coach a group of collegiate athletes in a tournament held in Australia. Her team competed against the Queensland Academy of Sport, National Junior and National Senior teams. Royer-Johnson also coached for USA Athletes International in the summer of 2009 during a tour of Scotland. In 2010, the team made stops in Austria, Slovenia and Italy before a 2011 squad, which included Providence's Carly Morrison and Muzzonigro, visited Curacao. In 2012, the team which included Friars Kelly Ashmore and Elizabeth Hoyt, traveled to the Netherlands where they played 11 matches in Amsterdam, Soeste and Groningen. In 2013, she coached in Costa Rica where her team finished 4-0 and included Annie Russian and Hoyt.
Royer-Johnson came to Providence after spending three years as assistant coach and kinesiology lecturer at Angelo State University in San Angelo, Texas. In addition to her coaching duties at Angelo State, Royer-Johnson was the director of ASU's volleyball camp and coached the Planet Volleyball Junior Olympic club team for 18-and-under players. From October 1996 to May 1997, Royer-Johnson worked for NASA at the Goddard Space Flight Center where she oversaw the fitness lab. While working for NASA, Royer-Johnson served as a graduate assistant at the University of Maryland in the kinesiology department, where she earned her master's degree in kinesiology, with a concentration in sports psychology, in May of 1997.
A 1995 graduate of the University of Scranton with a double-major in human services and philosophy, Royer-Johnson was a four-year letter winner on the volleyball team. She was captain as a junior and senior and was named the league MVP in her senior season. She was also the recipient of the O'Hara Award as a senior, which is presented annually to the outstanding female athlete of the Scranton senior class.
In January 2009, Royer-Johnson was inducted into the University of Scranton's Wall of Fame, the first and only volleyball player in school history to receive the honor. The Wall of Fame was founded in 1970 to honor former student-athletes, coaches, administrators, and those in the community who have been instrumental in the overall development of the University of Scranton's athletics program.
Royer-Johnson resides in North Providence, R.I. with her husband, Jeff. The couple married in December 2009.
Keith Smith | Assistant Coach
Keith Smith is in his first season as the assistant coach of the Providence College women’s volleyball team.
Smith was an instrumental part of the Friars’ success in his first season with the team. Providence posted its first winning record since 2007 (17-16) in the 2017 season, including six wins in the BIG EAST. The Friars’ also had their best start in program history as they began the season with an 11 match win streak. The team also had an All-BIG EAST Second Team selection in Addison Root.
Smith joined the Providence staff after being a graduate assistant coach at McKendree University. Smith worked with both the men’s and women’s volleyball teams while at McKendree. Smith helped coordinated the offenses for both teams, both before and during matches, in order to help setters and attackers.
Prior to McKendree, Smith was a volunteer assistant coach of the men’s volleyball team at Grand Canyon University in 2015-2016. While at GCU, Smith worked with setters on decision-making and game plans by breaking down and analyzing game film. During matches, Smith helped analyze opponents blocking to help middles and pin blockers change match plans.
Smith played collegiate volleyball at Grand Canyon University from 2011-2014. Over his four seasons at GCU, Smith started 112 of 128 matches and became the all-time leader in assists in GCU history as well as being the all-time leader in assists for the NCAA during the 25-point era. Smith graduated from GCU with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management.
During the 2014-15 season, Smith played on the Orion Top Volley Volleyball Club in Doetinchem, The Netherlands. Acting as the starting setter for the club, Smith helped lead the team to top-four finishes in the regular season, the national cup, and the playoffs. He also helped the club earn a chance to play in the CEV Challenge Cup during the 2015-16 season, after having previously missed out in the 2014-15 season.