Angie Gambrell Russell
Angie Gambrell Russell

Angie Gambrell Russell is the 10th person affiliated with the volleyball program to be inducted into the Upstate Athletics Hall of Fame.

Russell played both volleyball and softball at then-USC Spartanburg from 1986-90. She is being inducted for her efforts on the volleyball court where she was a two-time All-District Six selection and remains among the all-time greats in the record books.

Russell played for three different coaches during her time at the University, including Upstate Athletics Hall of Fame member Joe Bowman. Her teams topped the 30-win mark all four years she wore a Lady Rifle uniform and she led the team to 134 victories in her career (134-47). She was a part of three-straight NAIA District Six championship teams from 1987-89 and helped lead those teams into the NAIA Nationals.

Russell’s prowess on the court still resonates today. Despite finishing play 25 years ago, she still owns the all-time single game school record with 31 kills against High Point as a senior in 1989. She was also a tremendous defensive player at the net and still owns the program’s all-time records with 516 total blocks and 266 solo blocks in her four-year career. She is second all-time with 250 assisted blocks as well. She is fourth all-time with 1,639 points, fifth with 1,148 kills and seventh with 1,095 digs.

Russell graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education in 1990. She began her career working at the Thoms Rehabilitation Hospital as a Cognitive Retraining Therapist in Asheville, N.C., before relocating to Columbus, Ga., after getting married. She coached middle school volleyball and was a teacher for eight years before the family moved to Rock Hill. She taught physical education classes at Winthrop for six years and was the Club Director for the Rock Hill Volleyball Club for one season. She now lives in Asheville, N.C., and is the proud mother of three children – Katy, who is a sophomore at Furman, Emily and Ian.

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