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Originally published Friday, January 14, 2005 at 12:00 AM

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NW Sports Briefing

UW volleyball coach gets five-year extension

Jim McLaughlin, who coached the University of Washington volleyball team to its first Pac-10 championship and NCAA Final Four appearance last fall, has signed a new five-year contract...

Jim McLaughlin, who coached the University of Washington volleyball team to its first Pac-10 championship and NCAA Final Four appearance last fall, has signed a new five-year contract to coach the Huskies.

McLaughlin, 44, was the Pac-10 and national coach of the year. He had been mentioned as a candidate for either the vacant U.S. men's or women's national team head-coaching vacancies.

"Jim McLaughlin is the best volleyball coach in the country, and this is a tremendous moment in our program's history to extend his tenure as our head coach," said UW athletic director Todd Turner.

McLaughlin inherited a program in 2001 that had finished last in the Pac-10. Since then, the Huskies have made three NCAA tournament appearances.

Besagno ready for MLS

Nikolas Besagno, a 16-year-old from Maple Valley, is expected to be drafted in the first round of today's Major League Soccer Superdraft.

Besagno, a midfielder, attended Kennedy High School of Burien as a sophomore, but now attends Edison Academic Center after being invited into U.S. Soccer's Under-17 Residency Program in Florida last April. He plans to complete his junior and senior years this school year.

Besagno, a 6-foot, 175-pounder who played for F.C. United before moving to Florida, has started in 10 of 11 international matches. One draft Web site predicted he could be the No. 1 overall selection.

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