KAMLOOPS - The Thompson Rivers University WolfPack women’s volleyball team has added some depth at outside hitter.
The WolfPack and head coach Chad Grimm are pleased to announce the signing of Mikayla Funk of Pacific Academy in Surrey, BC.
The 5’10” Funk was also a member of Team BC’s U-16 squad which won the Western Elite tournament last summer. She plays club volleyball for her father Tim with the U-18 Force.
“One of the most important things I was looking for while looking at universities was a good coach,” said Funk about her deciding on Thompson Rivers. “I’ve heard nothing but good things about Chad and he was very patient with me and my decision to go to TRU. The wide variety of programs at TRU was appealing.”
Funk says her time spent training with Team BC on the Thompson Rivers campus two summers ago helped her with her decision as well. “I really enjoyed how close the campus was to everything and the opportunity to make a contribution on an up and coming program was important to me.”
Funk says her strengths are her ability to hit the ball and excel under pressure. “I have played up in club volleyball the past five years but the jump to CIS will be a big one. It will be a challenge but I am ready for it.” She adds she has seen many CIS matches and believes her biggest obstacle will be getting used to playing against bigger stronger, more consistent players.
Funk’s coach at the Baden Cup in the Team BC program was current WolfPack player Krista Hogewoning (5th year, outside hitter, Delta, BC). Hogewoning was teammates with Funk’s older sister (Rachel) with the University of Fraser Valley before coming to TRU.
Mikayla also played club and school volleyball against current TRU rookie Kendra Finch (North Vancouver, BC). One of her fellow rookies with the WolfPack next year is Team BC teammate Halli Drezet (libero, Prince George, BC).
“Mikayla is super positive, outgoing and upbeat,’ Drezet said about Funk. “ Her confidence is never taken as cockiness because she is very humble and genuinely nice. I think she will be very successful at the CIS level.”
Drezet and Funk were on different Team BC squads last summer and only trained together. “We definitely had chemistry though.” Drezet added.
As far as the many community initiatives that Thompson Rivers gets their athletes to do? “I think it is important to give back and be connected with the community.”
Coach Grimm stated: “Mikayla is an extremely well rounded person and volleyball player that can contribute in a number of ways and positions to our program. Mikayla has played every position on the court and always finds a way to get the job done. She is able to remain focused in the big moments and has a long history of winning, which will also help our program move forward and solidify that level of expectation within our group. I am very excited to have Mikayla join our program as we continue to build a solid foundation moving forward.”
Funk joins fellow WolfPack recruits for 2016-17: Drezet, Sarah Dobinson (6”0”, outside hitter, Whitby, ONT-Donald A. Wilson Secondary/Pakimen-Team Ontario Red), and Abby Spratt (5’11”, setter, Calgary, AB-Centennial High School/403 selects).
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