Category Archives: volleyball

Longtime Yakima Valley Coach Al Rogers Passes

Al Rogers pictured with longtime friend and fellow coach Kathie Woods in April at the Clackamas CC Alumni Tournament.

From YVCC President Linda Kaminski:

"It is with a saddened heart that I share the news that we lost our friend, colleague, and longtime Head Volleyball Coach Al Rogers. Al passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday evening while visiting his family in Texas.

Al started coaching at YVC in 1978 and took over as head coach for women’s volleyball in 1988. He has received many awards and has had tremendous accomplishments in his years here at the college including NWAC East Region Coach of the Year in 1995, 2010, and 2013.

His team won NWAC East Region titles in the 1989-90 and 1990-91 seasons and he led the Yaks to 15 NWAC Championship Tournament appearances during his tenure.

Al was the 2001 recipient of the Wilber H Peck Referee Emeritus Award from USA Volleyball and the 1988 recipient of the Glen G Davis Award by USVBA for referee service to the game of volleyball.

Al participated in the 1984 Olympics as a line judge and served as the head official of the 1983 US Olympic Festival.

Al was an outstanding member of the YVC community and mentored countless students both on the court and in support of pursuing their educational goals.

His family is requesting privacy at this time. When more details are available we will share them with the college community.

Our thoughts are with his family."

NWAC Volleyball and Soccer Fall Sports Festival 2016

image of Fall Sports Festival logo

VANCOUVER, WA – The Northwest Athletic Association (NWAC) is pleased to announce the NWAC Men’s and Women’s Soccer Friendlies has grown into a Fall Festival with the addition of NWAC Volleyball. 

The Soccer and Volleyball matches will be held at the Willamalane Center for Sports and Recreation located in Springfield, Oregon, August 27-28, 2016.

The NWAC is excited to be continuing its partnership with Willamalane Park and Recreation District, Eugene Cascades Coast Sports Commission, Lane Community College, and the City of Springfield in this one of a kind of event.    

Approximately 49 men’s and women’s soccer teams and 32 volleyball teams will kick off their season at Willamalane Sports and Recreation Center and at Lane Community College.

According to NWAC Executive Director, Marco Azurdia, "the Willamalane Recreation Center and the Eugene Cascades Coast Sports Commission were incredible hosts last year and we have always talked about growing this event and now with the inclusion of NWAC volleyball it is happening!"

Approximately over 1800 soccer and volleyball student-athletes and coaches will be competing in what is the opening event for their respective sports.  This is definitely the biggest athletic sporting event ever done by the NWAC. 

Azurdia added, "The NWAC is thrilled to provide this unique opportunity for our student-athletes and for the communities of Springfield and Eugene, Oregon.  At many of our major events, student-athletes from NWAC are involved in a community service project.  This year at the NWAC Fall Festival, member schools will be providing school supplies for the Brattain House to pass along to students in the Springfield area."

Joey Jewell, Eugene Cascades Coast Sports Commission Director of Sports Sales & Development commented, "This is a tremendous opportunity for all of Lane County and we are all extremely excited to be hosting this unique event.  For the first time ever, Volleyball has been added to increase the experience and overall feel for the 2016 NWAC Fall Festival.  It is important to the local community, student-athletes and their coaches that we put together a first class event with an exceedingly high experience.  Through the combined efforts of the NWAC, Lane Community College Athletic Department, Willamalane, the Brattain House, city of Springfield and the Eugene Cascades Coast Sports Commission we feel that goal has been accomplished."  

The estimated economic impact of the NWAC Fall Festival could be close to $598,000.

Another partner in this event is Hole in the Wall Catering.  According to Gary Rodgers, General Manager, "Hole in the Wall Catering is proud to be a sponsor of the NWAC Fall Festival again this year!  Events like this are great for our community and speaks to the good job that Eugene Cascades Coast Sports are doing for Lane County."

* Soccer matches will be played at Willamalane Sports and Recreation Center and Lane Community College and all volleyball matches will be at Willamalane

Mt. Hood Volleyball promotes Lissinna to head coach

photo of Kim LissinnaGresham, Ore. — Mt. Hood Community College has announced the hiring of Kimberly Lissinna as the new head coach of the MHCC Women’s volleyball program.

Lissinna served as the assistant coach the past two years for MHCC under head coach Andrew Clifton, who resigned from the program in March to become the head coach at the Oregon Institute of Technology.

Lissinna has already built an impressive resume of both coaching and playing. She was a four-year starter at Division I Weber State University from 2007-2010, and was captain of the team her senior year.

Following her graduation, she moved directly into coaching, taking an assistant position at Minot State University, and then moving to Charleston Southern University, where she served as Interim Head Coach from 2012-13.

She joined MHCC’s program in 2014 as an assistant coach where her responsibilities included evaluating and recruiting talent at the high school level. She also served as head coach for club volleyball programs, including the Athena Under 14 and Xtreme Under 16 club teams.

"Community colleges provide a unique opportunity to immediately impact players both on and off the court," said Lissinna.

The MHCC volleyball program has been one of the most respected and successful programs in the state, including eight first-place finishes in the last 11 years. But the program is coming off of back-to-back losing seasons.

In 2014-15, the program went a combined 24-51, following five straight southern region championships. In its 50 year history the MHCC volleyball program has had 44 winning seasons, going a combined 1349-482 (.736).

"I respect the tradition that Mt. Hood athletic department has prided itself on and would love to be a part of reinstalling this honor to the volleyball program," said Lissinna. "I am looking forward to working with the administration and student-athletes to create a positive change in my players’ lives."

Bellevue Volleyball duo of Jennings & Zubrod ink with 4-year universities

Bellevue College Volleyball has announced that Alana Jennings and Isabella Zubrod are moving on to four year universities to continue their athletic and academic careers. Both athletes helped lead the Bulldogs to a seventh place finish at the 2015 NWAC Volleyball Championship Tournament.

Alana Jennings
photo of Alana JenningsSophomore libero Alana Jennings has committed to NAIA Warner Pacific College.

Jennings lead the Bulldogs defensively with 8.67 digs per match and serve receive of 2.02.

During the season Jennings earned All-Tournament team at the Clackamas Crossover despite an injury during the last match of the tournament. Jennings also selected for the NWAC Volleyball Sophomore All-Stars North Region team.

"These last two years have been so much fun and I am really thankful because I have grown so much as a person and as a player," said Jennings.  "I am so happy to be able to continue my college career at Warner Pacific and continue doing what I love. I just thank my teammates and coaches for pushing me these last two years because without them I wouldn’t be where I am today,"

Jennings will finish her Associates degree at Bellevue College this spring and will enroll at Warner Pacific College this coming fall.

Isabella Zubrod
photo of Isabella ZubrodFreshman setter Isabella Zubrod has decided to continue her career at NCAA Div III Pacific Lutheran University.

Zubrod collected several awards in her one year at Bellevue including First team Northern Region, three Northern Region Player of the Weeks and All NWAC Setter of the Week for week four.

She was second in the conference in assists with 32.52 assists per match and a total of 943 assists on the season. Defensively Zubrod collected 35 blocks on the season and averaged 6.21 digs per match.

"The girls and coaching staff have been amazing here at Bellevue!," exclaimed Jennings. "It is sad that I am leaving, I have made a lot of memories here but I am looking forward to continuing my career at PLU."

Zubrod will finish the spring quarter at Bellevue and transfer to PLU for the fall.

Shoreline’s M’Kailah Redden Commits to Warner Pacific Volleyball

M'Kailah Redden in actionFormer Shoreline CC Volleyball stand out M’Kailah Redden has committed to Warner Pacific College in Oregon to continue her education and Volleyball career.

Redden played for the Dolphins during the 2013 and 2014 seasons and spent this past year completing her Associates degree from Shoreline.

As a player for the Phins Redden was named to the 2014 All-North Region 2nd team in her Sophomore season.

Shoreline’s Anya Golubitskikh commits to EWU

Anya Golubitskikh in action

Fresh off a dominating Sophomore season Dolphins’ Volleyball star Anya Golubitskikh has committed to continue her career at NCAA Divsion 1 Eastern Washington University.

Golubitskikh led the Phins with 3.15 Kills per game and an attack percentage of .311. Defensively she led the team with just under 1 block per game and 38 total blocks on the year.

Golubitskikh earned a number of honors in her sophomore season as she led the Phins to their first North Region title since 2011. She was named to the NWAC Championships All-Tournament team and the NWAC Volleyball All-Stars North Region First Team.

Golubitskikh will enroll at Eastern Washington this Spring to get a head start on preparation for next Fall. Congrats Anya!

Greg Finel takes the reins of Pierce Volleyball

Pierce College has announced the selection of Greg Finel as the new head coach for the Raider Volleyball program. Finel served as an assistant coach with the Raiders this past season, helping lead the team to their first appearance at the NWAC Championships since 2012.

Finel has coached club ball the past six years. He has been with the Lake Tapps Volleyball Club the past four years, and was with Above the Net for two years before joining LTVC.  His club teams have won two bids to participate at Nationals, and many of his players have earned college scholarships.  Finel is also an accomplished player and coach in beach volleyball.

"We are extremely fortunate to have Coach Finel take over the reins of the program," said Pierce Athletic Director Duncan Stevenson. "He provided a great deal of leadership this past season, in his role as assistant coach, and we see nothing but great things for the program in the year ahead.  His passion for the sport of volleyball, and his approach to developing the skills and abilities of young women in a positive team environment, are a formula for success for Raider Volleyball."

"I am truly excited about the opportunity to be named as the head coach of the Pierce College Volleyball program," said Finel.  "I look forward to developing the program, continuing our success from 2015, and growing our Raider Volleyball Family."

A native of Washougal, Washington, Finel attended at Clark College and Eastern Washington University.  He currently works as a branch manager for Randstad Staffing, and lives in Puyallup with his wife and their two sons.

Melanie Miller to head the new volleyball program at South Puget Sound

New South Puget Sound Community College Admissions Specialist and Volleyball Coach Melanie Miller is ready to start living her "dream come true." Miller begins at SPSCC on Jan. 11 where she will serve in both an admissions role and as the college’s first volleyball coach, building up a new program that will see its first season in fall 2016.

"I am looking forward to being the first volleyball coach here at SPSCC," Miller said. "It is not often that you get the opportunity to build a program from the ground up; now how exciting is that?! It is a dream come true! I am so passionate about volleyball and I am so excited to give back to the sport because it has given me so much."

With more than 17 years experience as a volleyball player and more than 6 years coaching experience, Miller is eager get the program off to a strong start quickly.

"My goals are to have a competitive program from the start," Miller said. "I want to surpass any low expectations anyone may have due to the program just starting. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of a brand new team and I want to build a team that is proud to represent the Clippers nation."

A native of Long Beach, Calif., Miller moved to Hillsboro, Ore., at a young age. There, she attended Liberty High School before spending a year at Western Oregon University. She then transferred to Concordia University in Portland where she earned her bacherlor’s degree in social work. Miller spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach at Clark College in Vancouver, Wash., helping lead the team to a second-place finish at last year’s Northwest Athletic Conference volleyball championships. She also coached club teams and numerous summer camps, skills camps and conditioning camps.

SPSCC Director of Athletics Nick Schmidt said there are many reasons Miller was the right choice to lead SPSCC’s first volleyball team.

"She’s a Pacific Northwest local and knows first-hand that this area produces high quality volleyball talent," Schmidt said. "She knows what it takes to compete, recruit and be successful in the NWAC. And she comes from one of the more successful athletic programs in the league and knows what it’s like to be part of a winning culture. As we look to build Clipper Athletics for long-term success, she will play a key role."

SPSCC Director of Student Recruitment and Outreach Meg Woolf said Dunn is a perfect fit for the admission specialist position too.

"Melanie brings a nice balance between passion for the sport of volleyball and passion for the importance of all students finding a great ‘fit’ in a college on the path to a great career," Woolf said. "Melanie’s extensive experience at various levels of volleyball—whether that be club or college level, and as a player and student who has overcome challenges herself, will inform her approach to outreach efforts that work for the benefit of all students—on and off the court."

Miller said she is also eager to begin working with students.

"I am looking forward to getting to wake up every day and work with people; to help future students explore avenues and options to continue their education," she said. "The impact this position can make both for the school and individually is huge, I cannot wait to be a part of that."

Mark Dunn, head volleyball coach at Clark, said there’s lots he’ll miss in Miller.

"I will miss the way she interacted with our student athletes," Dunn said. "Mel found a way to get the most out of our players. Mel’s enthusiasm for the game of volleyball and her competitive spirit will make her successful in coaching."

Miller also added she’s excited to begin recruiting come the Jan. 15 start. Practices begin on Aug. 1, and the new Clipper squad makes its debut Aug. 27 and 28 at the NWAC Volleyball Showcase, cohosted by Lane Community College and Eugene (Ore.) Cascades and Coast Sports Commission. The team makes its home debut on Sept. 7 against Miller’s previous employer, Clark College.

Tony Miranda returns to Edmonds Volleyball

image of Tony Miranda

Edmonds CC announced the hiring of Tony Miranda as its volleyball head coach on Monday. Miranda has 25 years of coaching experience and returns to EdCC where he coached with the Tritons for five seasons (as an assistant from 2005-06 and as head coach from 2007-09). In 2008, he guided Edmonds to the NWAC North Region regular season title and a third-place finish at the NWAC tournament.

Miranda also coached at Bellevue College for four seasons (2001-04), leading the Bulldogs to the NWAC tournament each year, including a third-place showing 2002. He was named the NWAC North Coach of the Year in both 2001 and 2002 and was selected as the NWAC Coach of the Year in 2002.

"It’s time for EdCC volleyball to start winning again," said Edmonds CC Athletic Director Jorge de la Torre. "Coach Miranda brings in a ton of experience at the collegiate and club level. I am confident that he is going to quickly turn this program around and take us back to NWACs."

Miranda’s coaching experience includes stops as an assistant at Seattle Pacific University and Highline College, as well as stints as the head coach at Holy Names Academy, Foster High School and Inglemoor High School.  In addition, Miranda is the director of the Northwest Volleyball Foundation and was the Junior Program Director, for the Puget Sound Region, of USA Volleyball.

"I am thankful to Jorge de la Torre for having the confidence in me and for giving me this great opportunity to return to Edmonds," said Miranda. "I am excited for the challenge. I am ready to get to work and look forward getting back in the gym and bringing this program back among the top programs in the NWAC."

A graduate of the University of Washington (1988), Miranda lives in Edmonds with his wife and step-son, a senior at Edmonds-Woodway.Coach Miranda can be reached at 206-550-6671.

Lane hires Stephanie Willett to lead new volleyball program

image of Stephanie WillettEUGENE, Ore.—Lane Community College is pleased to announce the appointment of Stephanie Willett as the Head Coach of the new Women’s Volleyball Team. Coach Willett brings strong experience both as a coach and a collegiate player.

Coach Willett was formerly the Head Coach at her alma mater Southwestern Oregon Community College (SWOCC) where she took a program and improved it year over year culminating in qualifying for the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) Volleyball Championship Tournament.

"We have hired an excellent coach who brings invaluable experience as a coach and a player from within the NWAC," said Greg Sheley, LCC Director of Athletics. "We could not ask for a better leader for our new Lane CC Women’s Volleyball program."

In addition to coaching at the collegiate level, Coach Willett has coached successful high school and club programs including most recently being the Head Coach at Atrisco Heritage Academy and the Rebels Volleyball Club in Albuquerque, NM.

As a student-athlete, Stephanie Willett had a successful collegiate career at SWOCC and Eastern New Mexico University in the NWAC and Lone Star Conference. Stephanie competed in the NWAC All Star game, was selected to an NWAC All Southern Region team and received multiple Player of the Week honors. Stephanie graduated with a degree in communications that she has found has served her well in the coaching community.

"Coach Willett can help our student athletes compete at this level right away because she has been there herself and knows what it takes as both a player and a coach," said Sheley. "She will also be able to help get our student athletes to the next level as she appreciates the balances that are required for student athletes."

Coach Willett is excited to be back in Oregon and at Lane. She will hit the ground running, getting right into the recruiting process as there have been dozens of potential student athletes that have registered their interest in playing for Lane through the Lane Titans website and reaching out directly to LCC athletic staff. Any interested student athletes can access this interest form at

The Lane Community College Women’s Volleyball program has the maximum number of Grant-In-Aid financial aid awards that are allowable under NWAC rules. This puts Lane in a strong place to compete for the best student athletes and offer them an opportunity to continue their education and their love of volleyball at a reduced tuition cost.

For more information contact Greg Sheley, LCC Director of Athletics at 541.463.5548