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RVHS grad named district coach of the year

| November 17, 2014

PORTSMOUTH – Kayla Landaker’s first year as a head varsity volleyball coach at Notre Dame High School, a Division IV Catholic school in Portsmouth, was a pretty impressive one.

“I had a very talented group of girls with incredible work ethic,” said the 2010 River View High School graduate.

Landaker’s team finished the year 22-4, which was the most wins in school history, and won the first district title in school history. She also was named district coach of the year.

“Accomplishing all of this in my first year of coaching high school is incredible,” Landaker said. “I couldn’t have been more blessed to have walked into such a great group of girls and so many caring and helpful people at Notre Dame. I look forward to continue to build the program there.”

She said the key to the team’s success was discipline.

“They were the type of girls that responded well to it and were very, very coachable and eager to learn,” Landaker said. “One of my seniors told me they were skeptical at first because they have had a different head coach every year of volleyball, but once they figured out I knew what I was talking about they were totally on board.”

She played volleyball for four years at River View and was the starting setter for three. Landaker also played three years in college at The University of Rio Grande, where she graduated in 2013 from the Holzer School of Nursing. She also has been coaching for four years.

“While I was in college I coached a club team every year and had a blast doing it,” she said. “I am very knowledgeable about the sport and enjoy making an impact on younger players and watching their skills improve throughout the season.”

Landaker noted that her coaches from River View made a big impact on how she handles her own team.

“Oh my goodness….the Bahmers and all of River View’s program had such a huge impact on me,” she said. “Actually, Cari texted me and congratulated me when she found out that I got district coach of the year, and I told her thank you of course, but it was all because of the drills they taught me. I still live by the dedication and discipline they taught me and have carried it on to my players. At first they weren’t sure; they thought I was a crazy lady when I told them to tuck in their shirts the first day of practice. But they responded very well and before long started doing even the little things without being asked.”

Landaker also believes in hustling and having fun.

“Winning is always great but as long as the player is coachable, gives 110 percent all the time and has fun doing it, then I’m happy,” she said.

Category: High School

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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