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'Second mom': Sisson wins her 4th Coach of the Year award

“Her dedication to the team really inspires me," Titans middle hitter Olivia Kessel said. "Coach is so committed to this program she makes a family, not just a team."

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Titans Head Coach Breanna Sisson, left, and outside hitter Katherine Schneider with the Region 7 title.
Amber I. Neate / The Dickinson Press
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DICKINSON — Trinity Titans Head Coach Breanna Sisson was presented with the Coach of the Year Award on Nov. 9 following the Titans Region 7 Championship victory. She beamed with joy as the whole team huddled and chanted together in celebration.

“I honestly was not surprised she was named Coach of the Year because she deserves it,” Titans middle hitter Ava Jahner said. “Coach is like a second mom to all of us and has our backs all of the time. She’s taught me that it’s about a lot more than volleyball and that our team is a family.”

As a 2009 Trinity alumnus and former Titan volleyball star herself, Sisson shares a special connection with her players. After high school she worked with the team as an assistant coach for two years before being promoted to the head coaching position. True to her passion for youth sports, Sisson is also a gym teacher at Trinity's elementary schools.

This is the fourth time Sisson has received the award in her 8-season career as head coach for Trinity. She hopes to carry on the Titan tradition by teaching the girls some of the skills she learned when she was a young athlete at Trinity.

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Sisson has been a volleyball athlete since childhood and is passionate about helping her team grow as young women.
Amber I. Neate / The Dickinson Press

“It’s really nice to be recognized by my peer coaches in Region 7,” Sisson said. “That award is voted on by all coaches, so it’s nice to know that the hard work and dedication that I put into my program is recognized, but not only that, it’s a recognition of my coaching staff. They put in a lot of hours with me. We do a lot of discussions and planning for the season. They are a big part of that award as well.”

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Her “player first” coaching philosophy puts each athlete’s wants and needs above all else. Her mission is mentoring each student to build and grow as an individual, enhancing physical abilities while strengthening mental fortitude.

She strives to exemplify herself and coaching staff as role models for the team.

“We are there to mold them into young women, inspire them and hopefully give them a place where they can have fun and be comfortable alongside volleyball,” Sisson said. "Building those relationships with our players is something that I truly cherish, and I hope that’s something that the girls can take away.”

According to Sisson, one of the team’s biggest milestones this season was placing third in Des Lacs, N.D., at the Lake Invite Tournament. A third place finish is the best standing the team has had in a long time at the meet. The Titans have competed in different tournaments across the Western Edge and played some of the North Dakota's top ranked teams. Competing as the no. 1 seed in the Region has allowed them to face and learn from some of the fastest teams.

“We may not have come out with a win, but some of those experiences have definitely grown us stronger and that’s what’s preparing us for next week (at State),” Sisson said.

“I’m super proud of Coach…She really cares about every player whether they’re on varsity or c-squad,” Olivia Kessel, Titans middle hitter said. “Her dedication to the team really inspires me. Coach is so committed to this program she makes a family, not just a team. Personally, Coach challenges me daily to grow as a player on and off the court. I’m proud and lucky to be one of her players.”

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Students, athletes and coaches flock to the court to celebrate the Region 7 title, Coach of the Year and All-Region selections.
Amber I. Neate / The Dickinson Press
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DICKINSON — It was a bleak home game season opener for the Dickinson Midgets girl’s hockey team Dec. 2. Their heads hung low following a brutal 9-2 loss against West Fargo United. The opening day loss comes as the season starts and memories of last year's difficult 4-16 season are still fresh.

Amber Neate grew up in rural Skull Valley, Arizona. Her passion of covering sports of all types, including personal favorites wrestling, hockey, rodeo and football, began at an early age.

She obtained her Associate of Arts Degree from Yavapai Community College before attending Northern Arizona University for a three-year journalism program. While at NAU, Neate worked as an Assistant Sports Editor for the Lumberjack Newspaper as well as a hockey commentator for KJACK Radio.

Gaining her experience working for a small community paper, The Wickenburg Sun, as a general news and features reporter, her love for sports and a small-town community brings her to Dickinson to cover southwest North Dakota sports.

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