Marian Central Catholic High School’s successful volleyball program has a new head coach.

Patty Brummond was recently hired to head up the team, which won the IHSA state championship in 2015 and took second in the state last year. 

Brummond, who has coached in the area for more than 20 years, grew up in Chicago playing softball and tennis. In high school, she was on the bowling team and ran track to stay conditioned. While she always loved volleyball, she didn’t first play until she went to college at Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, Ind., where she played intramural volleyball.

Locally, Brummond also coaches at Sky High Volleyball based in Crystal Lake. She also served as athletic director at Montini Catholic School in McHenry for more than eight years. 

Brummond first joined the Marian family in 2014 as the head freshman coach. During her time at Marian, she also assisted the varsity team and helped with program activities, service projects and special events such as Senior Night and Play for Pink breast cancer game. 

“I am mindful of how I interact with my players and keep the golden rule as a guideline – treat others how you or your children would want to be treated,” Brummond said. 

“Coaching is a ministry for me ,and I consider it a privilege. I believe that using my God-given talents and acquired wisdom will help others realize their potential. Parents entrust their children to us coaches, and I take that very seriously,” Brummond said. “I believe that everyone has something to contribute. I am open and give constant feedback so the players always know what they are doing well and what they need to work on.” 

Outgoing coach Laura Watling, who was with the program for a total of 17 years, left with a 243-80 record as head coach. In 2016, she was named the Suburban Catholic Conference Girls Volleyball Coach of the Year. Watling recently moved to Colorado due to a job transfer for her husband.

Marian’s varsity team moves up a class this season from IHSA Class 3A to 4A due to their back-to-back appearances at the state championship in 2015 and 2016. 

Ten seniors graduated in May 2017, but three incoming seniors are important contributors and return this fall. Kate Messino, Mae Novakoski and Mallory Gehrig are critical pieces to the team, according to Brummond. 

“I know we will have a great junior group coming, and they have some solid talent,” said Brummond.

The Lady ’Canes will begin practice Aug. 9 and play their first match Aug. 23 at Rosary. 

More than six people applied for the position and Athletic Director Curtis Price interviewed four of the applicants. 

“Coach Brummond knows the tradition of the program, and I feel that her leadership skills displayed while coaching the freshmen will transition well to coaching varsity,” Price said.

“I like her enthusiasm, I like her relationship with the players, and I like that she thinks about the team first over anything else.”

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