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McCastland sees all sides of volleyball
New hire inherits program on rise, eager to be involved
KANELAND—Approved for the job two weeks ago, new Kaneland varsity volleyball head coach Kerri McCastland says, “It’s been a great two weeks.”
Followers of Kaneland volleyball, on the upswing with double-digit wins the last five years, hope McCastland can be at the forefront of a great 2013 and beyond.
“I’ve been a head coach and official, and have coached high school and club, and this was the first job opening in awhile that I’ve actively pursued,” McCastland said.
McCastland, who has taught at Plainfield North High School since 2005, and coached from 2005-09, is eager to be in the Kaneland fold after being approved at last month’s board meeting. She continues to teach health, P.E. and drivers’ education at PNHS.
“Todd Weimer left the program in great shape, and I’m happy for him that he can do what he wants to do. I’m excited to be joining Cyndi Violett and Breanne Kahl, who’ve held it together this summer, and Leigh Jaffke, too. It’s going to be a great community to be a part of with great parents,” McCastland said.
McCastland hasn’t coached in four years, after the 2008 birth of her son, Jake, a journey that involved three years and five miscarriages.
“That was going to be my focus, and I had to step away,” McCastland said.
McCastland and her husband, Tim, an educator in the St. Charles School District, live in Geneva with their son.
The veteran of area volleyball coached in Arizona from 1994-99 before returning to Illinois to coach Oak Forest (2000-01), Andrew (2002-03) and Plainfield South (2004) before her latest stop at Plainfield North. McCastland has also had a hand in coaching club outfits like Second City Volleyball and what became Club Fusion in the Batavia area.
Itching to be involved in the game once again, McCastland officiated area volleyball matches, even taking on some assignments at KHS.
“I was impressed with the sportsmanship of the kids on the team and with kids like Ashley (Prost) and Lyndi (Scholl) from last year,” McCastland said. “The team is fun to watch and the program has a lot of depth now, going down to the middle school, which is beautiful.”
McCastland has been involved with most any aspect of the sport one can name, but officiating the area sport has given her a thoughtful perspective and approach.
“It’s giving an understanding that everyone goes in there and, in the heat of the moment, gives it their very best,” McCastland.
The new head coach is excited to be the person the buck stops with, and about the new surroundings in 2013.
“The area is passionate and dedicated to the kids,” McCastland said. “It’s a privilege to be part of that tradition.”