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Coach, player can't net agreement

Ursula Quoyeser and Charmaine Alfred both agree they were once very close.

Quoyeser, the volleyball coach at Pasco-Hernando Community College, and Alfred, her former star player, agree on little else.

"Coach Quoyeser was like a big sister to Charmaine," said Paul Alfred, Charmaine's father. "But after volleyball season, she didn't want to have anything to do with her."

Alfred, suspended from the team last month for what Quoyeser said were repeated violations of team rules, and faced with the possible cancellation of her scholarship, withdrew from school this week and returned home with her parents to Lafayette, La.

"Yes, we had a good relationship and I still care for Charmaine," Quoyeser said. "But I'm very disappointed in her."

Alfred's departure ended a relationship with Quoyeser that began four years ago when Alfred played for Quoyeser at Lafayette High. The relationship apparently turned bitter during the middle of PHCC volleyball season when Quoyeser benched Alfred and another starter, Bessy Cormier, for arriving late to a practice.

Alfred and Cormier, who also withdrew from PHCC and has returned home to Carencro, La., missed one game of a key conference match, but both returned to the lineup and led PHCC to a third-place state finish in December in the first year of the program.

PHCC was successful thanks mainly to a lineup that featured three players from Lafayette High where Quoyeser was coach before coming to PHCC last year. She persuaded Alfred to follow her to PHCC when Alfred failed to meet Proposition 48 entrance requirements for NCAA schools.

Alfred had led Lafayette High to two second-place state finishes in Louisiana and was the player of the year in her area of the state in 1990. She was recruited by several Division I schools, including Louisiana State, but had to settle for PHCC, where entrance requirements aren't as stringent.

At PHCC, Alfred picked up where she left off at Lafayette as she made the all-tournament team at the junior college state tournament and was a first-team all-South Region selection.

On the court, Alfred was successful, but off it she was experiencing problems, Quoyeser said. Quoyeser sent memos to PHCC provost Omar Ergle in December and January documenting a string of 13 team rules violations dating from Nov. 19 to Jan. 31.

The violations, according to Quoyeser, ranged from missing team meetings, study hall at school and curfew to other violations Quoyeser said occurred at the Chasco Woods apartments. That is where the college had arranged for Alfred and other out-of-state athletes to live.

Alfred was suspended from the team and received a letter dated Feb. 7 from Ergle saying her scholarship could be canceled after a review by the school disciplinary board.

"Just because Charmaine was an all-region player doesn't mean I had to put up with (her actions)," Quoyeser said. "I can't allow things like that to happen on this team. If she doesn't respect the rules and policies then the other kids will say they don't have to.

"I wouldn't have been doing my job as a coach if I didn't discipline Charmaine."

Paul and Leonna Alfred, Charmaine's parents, drove 12 hours from Lafayette this past weekend to New Port Richey to take their daughter home. It was one of several trips the Alfreds have made here to visit Charmaine.

They charge, and Quoyeser denies, that the coach failed to supervise the students and enforce team rules related to the players' behavior at Chasco Woods.

They also charge, and Quoyeser denies, that Quoyeser did not live up to an agreement to provide Charmaine Alfred transportation to and from the PHCC west campus (about three miles from the apartment complex) after volleyball season ended. That, said Leonna Alfred, accounts for her daughter missing class and practice.

"It all started after volleyball season," Leonna Alfred said. "And when Charmaine started complaining about the transportation and the things that were going on at the apartments, Quoyeser wrote those things to get rid of her."

Quoyeser maintains she did all she could to provide Alfred with transportation, even getting up at 5 in the morning when she lived in Tampa in order to get Alfred to an 8 a.m. class. Quoyeser also said she changed practice time to accommodate Alfred's class schedule only to see Alfred drop the class.

She also said none of her other players who live at Chasco Woods had any transportation problems, nor did they complain about the living conditions there.

Quoyeser also said that the parents of her other two players from Lafayette High _ Racquel McZeal and Michelle Gross _ called to express their confidence in Quoyeser after they read an article Charmaine Alfred recently wrote for her hometown paper detailing her problems at PHCC.

Meanwhile, Charmaine Alfred is back in Lafayette and hopes to enroll in a college and eventually play volleyball again.

_ Staff Writer Stephen Hegarty contributed to this report.

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