Different coaches use a variety of skills and techniques to connect with their players.
The head coach of the Grant Park Pirates Varsity girls volleyball team is using humor among other tools to propel her athletes to the next level.
When it comes to volleyball, Chris Halvorsen goes above and beyond standing at the front of the bench.
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“I used to play and I still play and I haven’t stopped playing, I just love the sport,” Halvorsen says.
She’s even recruiting some of her current players to join her on the court after they graduate high school.
“We have a women’s volleyball league and it’s all ex-national players, ex-university players, just for them to continue in the sport and enjoy it still.”
Halvorsen’s players say throughout the season their coach is always looking for new motivational tools, even if they come in the form of a bird.
“When we went to Brandon for a tournament she brought this fake turkey that we brought to all of our games, that just highlights her personality completely. It was a gift to her from her sister that she just decided to bring and show us, we all loved it. It’s name is Kingston,” says Christine Garrioch.
She’s also been around long enough to know when her athletes need a boost.
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“When she calls a timeout and it’s just us there talking, she cracks a joke. She has nothing else to say, she just wants to loosen us up a little bit, I think that helps us a lot,” said Denise Levi.
It’s a quality she’ll hang on to in her third season as Grant Park’s head coach next fall.