Leja promoted at Vanguard

In a span of nine months, Eryn Leja has gone from assistant to head coach of the Vanguard University women's volleyball team.

Leja has been promoted to become the Lions' coach, Vanguard's sports information department announced Friday.

She became the Lions' head coach because of the resignation of former Vanguard head coach Marissa (Cothran) Booker, a former Newport Harbor High and Lions' player who stepped down to accept the head coaching job of the Corona del Mar girls' volleyball team.

Leja joined Booker as the top assistant of the Lions' coaching staff in August. It was her first season working at the collegiate level.

Leja, who excelled as a player at College of the Desert and Chapman University, also has club coaching experience. As an assistant, she was a part of leading a 951 Elite 17s club team to a gold medal in the Junior Olympics in 2009.

Last season, Vanguard went 14-15, 6-14 in the Golden State Athletic Conference.

"I am extremely sad to be losing Coach Booker from the volleyball program," Leja said in a release. "Marissa has been a fabulous mentor and friend and I wish her and her family all the best in their future. Her love for Vanguard and her players are beyond words, and she will be greatly missed."

— From staff reports

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