By Greg Price
There will be a new person at the helm of the WHAM! volleyball summer camp, but still a familiar face in St. Mary’s School volleyball circles.
Pat Pyne is stepping down with former St. Mary’s standout Randi Tajcnar taking over.
“I’m currently in Edmonton right now pursuing an education degree and that has freed up my summers to be coming back home every year,” said Tajcnar. “I’ve been helping out Pat as a coach the last nine or 10 years or so. He was wanting to pass it over and I have picked up a few tricks of the trade from him over the years, and I jumped at the opportunity to keep it going. It was super important for me to keep it going in Taber after all the coaching I’ve got to experience as an athlete.”
When Pyne started up a Storm volleyball club that pre-dated WHAM!, Tajcnar was there at the ground level as a player.
“It was one little Grade 6-7 team, that was back in 1998 I think. Real grassroots stuff,” said Tajcnar.
From there, Tajcnar transformed into an elite-level volleyball players at St. Mary’s, Red Deer College and Team Alberta, primarily as a middle with some right side as well.
From a player to a coach has it’s getting used to, which Tajcnar attributed to Pyne in making it as smooth as possible.
Tajcnar was also an assistant coach at Olds College for two years.
“It’s such a different mindset shift going from athlete to coach. Having him to study under with even simple things that I wouldn’t have even considered as an athlete, because we just wanted to get in there and play, coming at it from a different perspective,” said Tajcnar.
“Pat was so organized and thinks of every different variable possible. It has helped my coaching philosophy immensely.”
The WHAM! Volleyball camps go Aug. 22-26. The Grade 6-9 camp goes from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the M.D. of Taber Park. Grade 10-12 goes from 6:30-9 p.m.
“There will be a lot of skill development, especially in the younger ages. But, what I really think is the strength of the camp, is we have college and university alumni coaches coming in, with some having experience coaching at the college level,” said Tajcnar. “We hope to provide a taste of what is to be expected from athletes who want to go onto that level of play.”
Ceanna Lindquist will be helping out with the camp with her very specialized skill set as a setter for the University of Regina.
“That will be unique, that will be our first year we’ve had a setter-specific coach,” said Tajcnar.
To sign up for the WHAM! volleyball camp, or to get more information, you can log onto the WHAM! Volleyball Facebook page or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We’re pretty excited to keep having the opportunity to keep on delivering these developmental camps in southern Alberta and we have seen some really awesome volleyball players come out of this area, and we hope to keep fostering southern Alberta as a Mecca of volleyball camps.”