Girls Volleyball: Whiting names Ashley Kieltyka as coach
Ashley Kieltyka, a 2008 Whiting graduate and former three-sport star for the Oilers, is the school’s new volleyball coach.
“I’m really excited,’’ she said Thursday. “They’re a good group of girls. We’ve been conditioning for a couple of weeks now and they’re working hard. They know it’s going to take a lot of hard work to be competitive against these schools. They’re always willing to give me more and that’s huge. They’re here day in and day out — five days a week.’’
Kieltyka, who played first base on Whiting’s 2006 and ’08 state-championship softball teams, served two years as Oilers junior varsity coach before being named to replace Kelly Greer.
Before returning to Whiting — where she’s spent three years as JV softball coach — Kieltyka coached Morton’s JV volleyball team two seasons.
“I definitely wanted the job, but was nervous about (getting) it,’’ Kieltyka, 24, said. “They had a lot of openings at the school. I thought they could hire a new teacher — maybe someone more qualified or with more experience. You just don’t know, but I felt like I was prepared to step up and be the next coach.
“Having played for Whiting, I want to bring back some of the tradition I feel maybe has gotten a little lost over the years. The tradition I experienced ... That’s what these girls deserve. They deserve to play for a program they’re proud of. I just want to start building tradition and building a program.’’
Whiting athletic director Paul Laub likes what Kieltyka brings to the job.
“Ashley is very enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the sport,’’ he said. “Having been a three-sport athlete — which we have many at Whiting — she understands the demands (on them). Having played all four years here, she bleeds Oiler Green, and knows about the strong tradition of athletics.
“Ashley is a tireless worker. She’s not afraid to ask others for new ideas. Having experienced success in high school sports, she will bring that experience with her as she coaches. She will be a great role model for the girls, and they will enjoy playing for her.’’
A volleyball and basketball player at Calumet College before graduating in 2012, Kieltyka in August will enter her third year as a kindergarten teacher at Nathan Hale Elementary School.