June 13, 2014
Gainesville, FL – Benavia Jenkins, former All-American middle blocker for the University of Florida, will join the Santa Fe Saints volleyball program as its first ever assistant coach Nick Cheronis recently announced. Jenkins recently finished her seven year professional playing career in Switzerland this May with Koniz Volleyball Club. In addition to playing in Switzerland, she has had professional playing stops in Spain, Turkey and Austria. She also competed with the Premier Volleyball League's Florida Wave from 2012-2014, helping the team finish second in 2013 and 2014.
As a Gator, Jenkins was part of a program from 2000-2003 that won four Southeastern Conference championships, made four NCAA tournament appearances, went to two NCAA Final Fours, and one NCAA national championship appearance. In that span, the Gators were 126-12 including 60-0 in SEC play. She was named Co-Captain in 2001 and 2003 and All-American in 2002 and 2003.
In addition to the decorated playing career, Jenkins was head coach at Lincoln Park Academy High School from 2010-2012, and founded A-Vaneb Volleyball Academy in Fort Pierce, Florida.
"I can't believe how lucky we are to have Benavia join our program," said Cheronis. "Her playing and coaching backgrounds will be enormous assets as we begin building a culture of excellence on and off the court. But, more than her experiences, her character is what I am most excited about. Our players are going to love playing for her".
"I am excited for the opportunity to return to Gainesville and begin working with Nick and the Santa Fe community," Jenkins said. "During this time, I want to help build a nationally competitive program and bring a sense of unity in not only our team, but with Santa Fe College. More importantly I am anxious to begin mentoring our players on and off the court by helping instill core values and life skill sets that they will be able to use the rest of their lives".