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Misty, Karch featured at conference

Irvine Scene

May-Treanor and Kiraly will be guests at coaches conference in Irvine this upcoming week.

June 23, 2012|By Joe Haakenson, Special to the Daily Pilot
(Scott Smeltzer…)

Concordia University's Master of Coaching and Athletic Administration (MCAA) department will host the California Coaches Conference this week, a five-day conference Monday through Friday focusing on "developing excellence in coaching and athletics."

Most of the conference will take place at Concordia, but some of it will be at Irvine Valley College, where the color gold will be prevalent.

That's because IVC director of volleyball Tom Pestolesi will have two very gold-minded guest speakers for his course titled "Advanced theory and strategy for coaching volleyball."

Pestolesi will have three-time Olympic gold medalist Karch Kiraly for a Q&A session on Monday at 1 p.m., and then two-time Olympic gold medalist Misty May-Treanor on Wednesday at 1 p.m.

"Both of them, in my opinion, are the two best volleyball players – for sure in America and probably the world – in the history of the game," Pestolesi said. "Look at Karch, he's only 6-foot-2 but his skill and mental toughness are unparalleled. With Misty, it's the same thing. She's absolutely the best skilled female volleyball player this country has ever produced. She can do everything, and she's only 5-9."

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May-Treanor, a former Newport Harbor High star, has teamed up with partner Kerri Walsh and will attempt to win a third gold medal in beach volleyball this summer in London at the 2012 Olympic Games. She has an interest in coaching and could someday wind up coaching at her alma mater Long Beach State.

For Kiraly, his playing career has given way to coaching – he's an assistant coach on the U.S. women's national team, which will go into the Olympics ranked No. 1 in the world.

But don't be fooled, Pestolesi says. Kiraly didn't land on a national team's coaching staff just because of his name.

"He went back and did clinics and camps, he didn't just say, 'I'm Karch, hire me,'" Pestolesi said. "I know for a fact six years ago he was going to clinics with JV coaches from whatever school, sitting next to them. He was learning from the bottom up."

Kiraly seems to have no problem dealing with the younger generation, and even babysat May-Treanor when she was a small child, according to her autobiography. While she went on to win her two gold medals on the beach, Kiraly won his first two on the indoor court and his third on the beach.

"He's the only one and probably will be the only one to win an indoor and outdoor gold medal in the Olympics," Pestolesi said. "It's just ridiculous."

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