Mackenzie Stutzman lives a full life. An entrepreneurial furrier, she enjoys riding and training horses, snowmobiling, hiking, hunting, and fishing.
Among all these interests, one sport rises above the rest: volleyball.
Although she played volleyball and basketball from sixth grade onward, during her senior year Mackenzie coached volleyball for younger students on public and homeschool teams.
In August, Mackenzie returns to the court as Montana Christian College’s volleyball coach. The intersection of sports and mentoring students is her primary reason for coaching, she said. “I believe the Lord used me to be a light to the girls in public school, and I have long-lasting relationships with them. That’s pretty special.”
Mackenzie enjoys “mentoring young people to be the best version of themselves and seeing them succeed after working hard.”
Pursuing a common goal can sometimes be a challenge, she said, so Mackenzie used the biblical metaphor of the Body of Christ when coaching Christian teams. “It was such an encouragement to use the Scriptures in that way because it pours out into real life situations.”
Pushing one’s self in sports to achieve physical goals beyond perceived capabilities finds a parallel with “leaning into Christ” while facing the trials of life. “This can really help you through life and provide tools to cope whether win or lose, or on good days or bad,” she said.
“I am as competitive as the next person. I love winning. But there are lessons to be learned in the losing and in the winning,” she said. But the bottom line for Mackenzie is “about glorifying God in all that we do on and off the court and having a really good testimony when we play.”
Still learning about MCC, Mackenzie sees great opportunity with the students. “This is a door God opened, I know the Lord will use me here.”
President Marvin Jones thanks God and MCC Professor Peter Musick for helping to recruit Mackenzie. The two have been associated through intramural volleyball teams for years.
“I could not be more pleased with Mackenzie’s decision to join our team,” Jones said. “She brings the exact blend of sports prowess and commitment to Christ that we need to build and lead this new program. Mackenzie also represents a long-awaited answer to prayer. I know she will lead the women on the team to represent our school and the Lord in ways that enhance our efforts and bring glory to God.”
Married to Casey (her childhood sweetheart), Mackenzie homeschooled their four children. The family attends Easthaven Baptist Church in Kalispell.