ROME TOWNSHIP, Ohio - "Coach" isn't nearly enough of a title to capture Mary Haynes.
"Prof," short for professor is what Fairland High School's volleyball players call Haynes, who has taught college classes, owns a Masters of Theology, counseled low-income kids in the Upward Bound program, teaches Spanish and has coached in college. Wife to Fairland assistant track coach and Huntington East football coach Brandon Haynes, she is mother to Azlyn, 6, and Connor, 2, and stepmom to Kylie, 11.
Mary Haynes replaces Nathan Speed, who resigned as volleyball coach last spring but still coaches the Dragons boys basketball team.
"This is a God thing," Haynes said of landing the Fairland job. "They needed a Spanish teacher and those jobs don't come open often. Then the volleyball position opened up. I know I was put here for a reason."
One of those reasons, Fairland fans hope, is to win. The Dragons last won an Ohio Valley Conference championship in 2013. Before that, Fairland hadn't won an OVC title since 2001.
Haynes graduated from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida. She was an assistant volleyball coach at now-defunct Mountain State University in Beckley, West Virginia, and at WVU Tech.
"I came here and boom, boom, boom, everything has fallen into place," Haynes said.
Fairland lost to graduation standout players Kelsie Warnock, who now plays at Marietta College, and Allie Marshall, who plays basketball at Cedarville University, but returns most of its roster from 2018. The Dragons feature Bailey Roland, one of the better players in the Tri-State and a college prospect.
Haynes' assistant is Nikki Hayes, former coach at Madeira High School in Cincinnati. Hayes has run Fairland's youth volleyball program.
"I got into volleyball coaching here by chance, but I love it," Hayes said. "I'm all in."
The Dragons open the season at 7 p.m. Aug. 22 at home vs. Ironton.