By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff
As fall 2017 rolls around, there will be some new blood associated with the East volleyball program. Former Marquette volleyball player Sara Blasier will be the new head coach for the Lady Suns.
Blasier grew up in Slinger and is the oldest of four kids in her family. However, she played for West Bend West High School her ninth grade year and later transferred to Slinger High School for her remaining three.
Throughout her childhood, Blasier participated in activities such as Irish dancing and swimming before she directed her attention towards volleyball.
“I started playing volleyball when I was eleven just for the social aspect of it and making friends,” Blasier said. “I played club volleyball for Milwaukee Sting 12s and 17s and my senior year of high school I played for Club Fusion in Marengo, Illinois. I set and hit right side my first three years of club, and by 15s I was setting all the way around.”
Blasier had aspirations of playing volleyball in college and that is just what she did.
“I received a full ride scholarship to play at Rice University in Houston, Texas,” Blasier said. I redshirted my freshmen year there and then played two more seasons as the starting setter there. I then transferred back home to Marquette University where I finished my last two years of eligibility as the starting setter. I will graduate May 21 with a degree in psychology.”
Little did Sara know that she would end up with a coaching position back in West Bend.
“I am going to be moving back to my parents’ house for a period of time before I start grad school,” Blasier said. “I saw there was this opportunity and I thought it would be really fun to give back to the community I grew up in and help make these girls better volleyball players.”
The East volleyball community is excited about having Coach Blasier on board. Denny Ziegler, the East athletic director, is impressed with how she played at the highest level of college sports and knows what it takes to be successful. He says Blasier will bring new energy to the program.
“She understands the mental aspect of how to be tough as well as the physical aspect,” Ziegler said. “She will continue the process of having tough expectations and standards for the girls to live up to. She will bring a variety of resources with her, like outside coaches in for youth camps.”
The players are excited, too.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the perspective from someone who still hasn’t stopped playing the game,” said Katie Albrecht, a sophomore. “I think this will not only allow her to advance our game, but to relate to what’s going on inside our heads.”
Outside hitter Lexi Darkow is looking forward to improving her game and having the potential for a winning season. She anticipates learning new things from Blasier.
“I’m also looking forward to new traditions and customs in the volleyball program,” said Darkow, a sophomore.
At the same time as coaching, Blasier will continue her educational career in a graduate program at Marquette.
“The program is called direct entry masters in nursing for non-nursing majors,” Blasier said. “Basically, it’s an 18-month accelerated program for students who got their bachelor’s degree in something other than nursing and after 18 months I will have my masters in nursing. Then after that I am planning on getting my doctorate as an acute pediatric nurse practitioner.”