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Owls beach volleyball coach Capri Grotowski dies at 38

South Florida native succumbs after nearly decade-long battle with breast cancer
Capri Grotowski: April 9, 1984-June 25, 2022
Posted at 11:51 AM, Jun 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-27 11:53:41-04

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Florida Atlantic beach volleyball coach Capri Grotowski has died after a nearly decade-long battle with breast cancer, the university announced Saturday. She was 38.

She spent eight years coaching at FAU, often while dealing with treatments and the effects of her illness.

Her most recent season was her best. The Owls finished 23-12, setting a program-record for wins, and notched their first-ever NCAA tournament win, defeating Stanford 3-0 in the opening round.

Grotowski was named Conference USA coach of the year.

She was 128-86 all-time at FAU and celebrated her 100th win on April 9, 2021 – her 37th birthday.

"The FAU family has suffered a terrible loss with the passing of coach Grotowski," FAU President John Kelly said in a statement. "We are grateful for Capri's service to the university and all the lives she influenced throughout her life and career."

A South Florida native, Grotowski graduated from Lake Worth Community High School and Keiser University, where she was a three-time All-Florida Sun Conference selection in indoor volleyball.

Grotowski's death comes just months after Joan Joyce, the only softball coach in school history, died.

Grotowski is survived by husband Steve Grotowski — who competed in beach volleyball at the 2012 London Olympics for his native Great Britain — and their two children.

"Capri was an incredible coach, but she was an even better person," FAU athletic director Brian White said in a statement. "We will forever be grateful for the contributions she made to FAU athletics, building the beach volleyball program into a national contender and positively impacting the lives of our student-athletes over the past eight years. Our thoughts and prayers are with Steve, Cayd, Kyah and the entire family."