Justin Wong comes to the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi staff as an assistant coach with nearly a decade of collegiate coaching experience and over 15 years at the club level. He joins the Islanders out of Georgetown University, where he has served as the assistant coach since 2015.
With the Hoyas, Wong was instrumental in the development of Symone Speech and Alyssa Sinnette as the duo both reached the 1,000 kill milestone their junior year in 2017. In addition, GU posted its best start to a season since 2012 while Speech earned back-to-back All-BIG EAST accolades including the program’s first AVCA All-Region and First Team All-BIG EAST selection since 2001.
In the two years prior to his time in Washington, D.C., Wong was a member of the Delaware State coaching staff. During his time with Delaware State, Wong was promoted from assistant coach to associate head coach. As the program’s only assistant coach, Wong was involved in all aspects of managing the program. Inside the gym, he assisted in training all skills but his main focus was on the outside hitters. Besides training, Wong's responsibilities included video scouting & statistical analysis while also serving as the recruiting coordinator and assisting with the travel budget and logistics.
In his two seasons at Delaware State, the Hornets had five players named to all-tournament teams as well as three players earn Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Weekly Honors.
Wong spent 2012 at Ohio University as the volunteer assistant where he helped in player development, opponent scouting, practice planning and other administrative duties. The Bobcats achieved a final record of 21-10 and led the conference in six out of seven statistical categories which culminated in its ninth Mid-American Conference (MAC) Championship.
Prior to Ohio, Wong started his collegiate coaching career at Miami University (of Ohio), where he served as volunteer assistant and was promoted to interim assistant coach in 2011. While on the RedHawks' coaching staff, he was responsible for video analysis and opponent scouting.
Outside of his collegiate coaching experience, he coached one of the top 15 open teams at Dallas Skyline Juniors in 2012 and then at Mintonette Sports in Columbus, Ohio. While at Mintonette, he helped lead the 17's team to a second place finish at USA Junior Nationals and a No. 40 ranking by PrepVolleyball.com among the top 17's national teams in the country. His most recent stop was with Metro Volleyball Club based in the Washington, DC area. He assisted 16 Travel his first year and then the following year was the head coach of the 14 Travel team that qualified in Open.
Wong played collegiately at Ohio State University on the men's club team as an outside hitter. He earned his bachelor's degree in Sports & Leisure studies: Coaching & Leisure Management and his master's degree in Sport Behavior & Performance at Miami University (of Ohio).
Sasha Karelov was hired on July 1, 2019 as the Islanders assistant volleyball coach. She played collegiately at Duke and Long Beach State.
While at Duke, Karelov earned AVCA All-America honors and was a three-time AVCA All-East Coast Region selection. She earned All-ACC honors three times and was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year as a senior. In four seasons for the Blue Devils, Karelov tallied 2,023 digs, 373 assists and 76 service aces in 123 career matches. She became just the third Duke player to ever surpass 2,000 digs and holds the program-record with 44 digs in a single match.
After graduating from Duke in December of 2016 with her Bachelors' in Public Policy Studies, Karelov transferred to Long Beach State where she was a two-time First Team All-Big West performer in beach volleyball. She graduated from Long Beach State in 2018 with her Master's in Kinesiology.
Karelov has worked for the past year at Crossroads School for Arts and Sciences as the Girls Indoor/Beach Volleyball Program Director in Santa Monica, Calif. During the 2017-18 year, she was an assistant coach at Cerritos College in Norwalk, Calif., while she finished her Master's Degree. Karelov has also coached for the Triangle Volleyball Club, the Orange County Volleyball Club, and the Actyve Volleyball Club.