Pitt Volleyball to Host Polish Professional Club Dabrowa

Pitt Volleyball to Host Polish Professional Club Dabrowa
Pitt International Classic set for September 3

PITTSBURGH – It will be a historic site on September 3 when the University of Pittsburgh women’s volleyball team hosts the Pitt International Classic and will share the court with Poland’s Tauron MKS Dabrowa Gornicza, a professional club from the Liga Siatkówki Kobiet (Polish Women’s Volleyball League). First serve of the exhibition match is set for 7 p.m. at Fitzgerald Field House.

“This match gives our girls the unique opportunity to experience volleyball at the highest level,” head coach Dan Fisher said. “Dabrowa was one of the top teams in Europe last year. This competition will give us something to aspire to, and will provide a fun cultural experience. It will be a very exciting volleyball atmosphere.”

Dabrowa is coming off a very successful campaign which saw them reach the title series of CEV Champions League, featuring 24 teams from around Europe. In a best of five series with defending champion Atom Trefl SOPOT, Dabrowa captured the first two matches, but then dropped the final three and took the silver medal.

Dabrowa’s roster is comprised of nine players from Poland, two from Belgium, one from the Czech Republic and one from Italy. Middle blocker Maja Tokarska was a member of Poland’s 2012 Olympic team.

Pitt is just one of many stops during the American Tour for Dabrowa. They will also be playing universities such as Notre Dame, Purdue, Ohio State, Bowling Green and Kent State.

The Panthers will have already played their first four official NCAA matches before hosting the exhibition contest with Dabrowa. Pitt opens the season at the University of Missouri’s Tiger Classic (Aug. 30-31). Pitt will also compete in the UConn Tournament (Sept. 6-7), the USF Invitational (Sept. 13-14) and will then host the Pitt Panthers Invitational (Sept. 20-21) before jumping into ACC action.

It is a promising outlook for the Panthers under first year head coach Dan Fisher. The Panthers return five starters from last year’s squad and 12 players overall. Second Team All-Big East performer Monica Wignot leads the way, while 2012 kills leader Jessica Wynn and 2012 assists leader Lindsey Zitzke are back for their junior campaigns.

General Admission tickets for the Dabrowa match are $5 at the door, while group rate tickets (15 people or more) are available for $1. Group tickets must be presold and can be obtained by calling the Ticket Office at 800-643-PITT (7488).

Following the match, both teams will be available for an autograph session. For more information, continue to check back with
www.pittsburghpanthers.com, and also follow @PittVolleyball on Twitter.

Druhna Chris: Time with PFA Youth

Over the past two months I have had the chance to spend a lot of time with the youth Members of the PFA. We had the Future Leaders Conference, a few attended the Adult Volleyball Tournament and we had the Youth Volleyball Tournament. I have to say that I enjoyed every minute of the time we spent together.

The Future Leaders group consisted of 18 of our young Members who came together to find out more about the PFA. They were able to give their opinions about what the youth Members would like to see happen in the future of our organization. They were able to come up with ideas to try and promote the youth activities of the PFA. But most of all, they were able to come together and spend time getting to know each other, building friendships that will grow with every youth event they attend.

The Youth Volleyball Tournament was another successful youth Event. It took place in La Porte, Indiana. There were six senior teams and there were six senior runners on those teams. For those of you who don’t know about the senior runners, they are the 19 and 20 year-olds who still love to come and play volleyball with their friends who are still seniors. There were also four intermediate teams and three junior teams. Everyone got to play a lot of volleyball, relax, have dinner and enjoy dancing to music played by the DJ at the Nest 564 La Porte Club.

We had a lot of Instructors, Instructresses and Chaperones who were at the tournament to help out the players. They helped me out too by being line judges and score keepers. Druh Mark Albin was the Chairperson of the tournament for District 6 and he and his crew were great hosts for our weekend. We played hard, ate well and danced the night away. There were lots of line dances, including the ones we made up at camp. When it came time for people to get ready to head back home, I could tell it was another successful event by the sad faces and long hugs exchanged by everyone!

When I got back home myself, one of the first things I did was check out Facebook. I saw lots of great pictures and heard a lot of great comments about how much fun everyone had and how they can’t wait for camp. I even posted my comments this time.

I really have come to appreciate the technology of Facebook and how it helps us to see and read about how our PFA friends are doing while we are apart. Our website is improving every day too. I want to encourage all of our youth Members to visit the PFA Youth Blog and check out the stories written by two of our Future Leaders. Feel free to add some of your own stories so that others can read them too.

I know that you all do a lot of other things back home in your schools and communities and I would love to hear about all the awards you win or people you help or anything that you do that you are proud of, whether it is with the PFA or just at home. So, feel free to go to the PFA Youth Blog and tell us all about you!

The last thing that I want to talk about now that I have cleaned up from the Youth Volleyball is camp. I have started making the final plans for Holiday Palooza at this year’s camp. Remember that we will be celebrating lots of holidays during the week, starting with Polish Independence Day. The dance on Saturday will be our New Year’s Eve celebration complete with noisemakers and hats. I hope that we can fill the camp with as many campers as possible, so talk to your friends and watch the website for registration information. It should be up within the next few weeks!

Now that the weather is getting better and the sun is up longer, don’t forget to get outside and enjoy it. Talk a walk, take a run, play ball, ride a bike or just go to the park with your friends. Enjoy your summer! It goes by quickly!

PFA Youth Blog: Share your experiences!

The following posts have been written by two PFA Youth Members, who are also PFA Future Leaders. The PFA Future Leaders wish to start up a conversation with all PFA Youth Members through blogging. They want Youth Members to share their stories, whether those stories are related to Falcon experiences or other exciting things that are happening in our Youth Members’ lives, it doesn’t matter.

To get started, our first posts share a couple of our Future Leaders’ experiences at two PFA Youth Volleyball Tournaments. If you were at this year’s tournament, write and tell us about your personal experience!

The PFA Future Leaders are also interested in hearing about the great things that you are accomplishing outside of the Falcons. Are you a musician? Do you compete on the soccer team? Have you won an award recently? We would love to hear about it and share it with our other Youth Members.

So, if you are 20 years old or younger, this portion of the PFA Blog is for you! Enjoy the first two posts and be sure to share your stories with us. Simply leave a comment. We would love to hear about what is happening with you!

All of the teamwork paid off!
Written by Lisa Wood, PFA Future Leader (Nest 725, Milwaukee)

The sweat dripped down my face. It was completely silent as our team waited for the serve. The other team’s server tossed the ball up and hit it. It flew over to our side, just inches above the net. One of my teammates quickly ran to bump the ball into the air and the volley began.

But hold on, let me back track to how I got here. It was our fourth game in the elimination round of the Youth Volleyball Tournament. We had lost one game and were finally getting out of the Consolation Bracket.

At the beginning of the tournament, we didn’t really play well. In fact, we lost almost every game in the Round Robin portion, but all of those games and losses brought the team closer together. We learned each other’s weaknesses and strengths and we’re now playing like a well-oiled machine. The best part was that we were always having fun, no matter how bad the game. One Member always knew what to do to lift up the team’s spirit. Another teammate came up with great cheers for us to say.

But let’s get back to the current game. Both teams were currently tied and the next point would determine the winner. The volley was long and intense. Our team kept calling out to one another as we bumped, set and spiked. I have no idea how long this volley lasted, but suddenly it was over. The ball hit the floor on the other team’s side of the net.

We won! All of the teamwork paid off and it was the most exciting game I’ve ever played!

We lost the next game though, but the team didn’t care. The tournament was still fun and the people, no, new friends I made, were even better!

For the first time, we didn’t lose!
Written by Christy Paterni, PFA Future Leader (Nest 8, Pittsburgh)

I was so excited that the volleyball tournament was finally here. I had been to some before and they were so much fun! The whole trip up I was talking to all the people that I had met at the last tournament and I was becoming even more excited.

I finally arrived and all of my friends were there to greet me. It was the typical greeting for girls, lots of screaming. Once everyone got unpacked, we talked some more.

When it was time to play, I couldn’t wait. Volleyball has always been my favorite part of the Falcons and it came at a perfect time. Every year since I started playing, my team came in last place. This year was going to be different.

Games started and we were actually winning, even though I didn’t do so great and I was getting a little mad. The day was over and we had won all of our games! When we got back to the hotel, everyone was so tired that we all just went to bed.

We woke up the next morning super early like we do at all tournaments. When we got to the gym, we quickly started pool play. As the day went on, teams kept getting knocked out of the tournament and we were still playing. The time finally came for the championship game and we were in it! We went the whole time undefeated for the first time ever.

We played our first game and got beat, so we had to play again. The entire game was so close but we actually won. For the first time, we didn’t lose!

After the game, we went back to the hotel and got ready for the evening’s dance. Though the dance wasn’t as great as the after party in the hotel lobby. Most of the kids stayed in the lobby and played card games, talked and laughed and had fun. Even people who didn’t stay in our hotel were there.

That year, 2009, I had the best time. I met new people who I became really close with. I know that I am going to be friends with them for a long time.

Druhna Chris: Blog-a-Palooza

Czolem Everyone!

So here it is, my first ever blog! I have been thinking and thinking about what to write about in a blog. I couldn’t really come up with a specific topic so you are going to get a little bit of everything from me in this first one.

The first thing that I want to let everyone know is that I have been reappointed as National Physical Education Director and am now working for the Polish Falcons of America on a full time basis. I am in the office everyday from 8:00 to 4:00. I am committed to the promotion, maintenance, and development of our physical fitness programs and our social, cultural, and educational activities. I strongly believe in our motto of “A healthy spirit in a healthy body”. I will continue to work towards that end.

I have a lot of ideas about what to do in the next four years of this administration. But for now, I am concentrating on the details of our usual events. The Adult Volleyball Tournament will be hosted by Nest 45, St. Louis, the weekend of March 8-9, 2013. I have updated the Individual Record Sheets for the Let’s Walk program and will be mailing them out to the Nests for recording of the 2012 miles. I am looking into sites for the Youth Volleyball Tournament which will be held at the beginning of April again. I am also researching the next phase of the Future Leaders group. National Zlot 2014 is also on my agenda for discussion. I am hoping to bring Polish Dancing back in some form at the Zlot. There will also be an Instructors meeting conference call and an Instructors meeting in 2013. Camp 2013 is also on the planning agenda.

I do have some new ideas that I hope to be able to present and implement. Please feel free to give me some feedback and to let me know if you have any ideas, suggestions, or questions. As I work through all of the planning stages, I will be sure to keep everyone updated through this blog and the website and the Sokol Polski. I think I have plenty to keep me busy for the foreseeable future!