By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader
IOWA CITY– The Women of Troy have a new volleyball coach.
West High Athletic Director Scott Kibby announced Monday, May 19, that Randy Dolson would take over the position vacated in April by Kathy Bresnahan, pending approval by the Iowa City Community School District’s board of education.
Dolson has been head coach at Dubuque Hempstead for the past seven seasons, and led the Mustangs to six state tournament appearances. He also was head coach for the University of Dubuque with over 100 wins in six seasons and a 1998 NCAA Division Three playoff appearance. Dolson then took over the top spot for Drake University’s program, saying, “I took over a poor program with limited resources, yet I wanted to take the risk and challenge.” Despite being a tough situation, Dolson improved the number of wins over three seasons.
At Hempstead he amassed a 202-62 record in seven seasons, was the 2008 All-Area Coach of the Year and the 2009, 2012 and 2013 Mississippi Valley Conference Coach of the Year. Additionally, he was the 2009 Iowa NE Class 4A District Coach of the Year and the 2013 East Iowa Class 5A District Coach of the Year.
“Coach Dolson brings a wealth of knowledge and success in volleyball,” Kibby said. “He has shown the ability to improve his teams and individuals as the season progresses. We anticipate that Coach Dolson will build upon the tremendous success that West Volleyball has enjoyed over the last several years.”
Bresnahan had been the coach for West High volleyball for 22 years through two tours of duty (1987-1999 and 2005-2013). Before that she was the varsity coach in Benton, Wisconsin (1980-1984). She compiled a career record of 671 wins to 205 losses for a 76 percent winning percentage. With the Women of Troy Bresnahan racked up a 584-184 record and a pair of Class 4A state championships in 2010 and 2011 as well as a runner-up in 2009.
She led her squad to seven state tournaments in total (1991, 1992, 1994, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011).
Bresnahan, or “Brez” as she’s known to staff, players, parents, fans and local media, also presided over seven Mississippi Valley Conference (MVC) championships (1993, 1997, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) and six MVC tournament championships (1993, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011).
She was named the Iowa Class 4A Coach of the Year for 2010 and 2011. Also in 2011, prepvolleyball.com named Brez their National Coach of the Year to list but a few of her accomplishments.
Bresnahan said at the time of her resignation, “whomever they hire will bring in some fresh ideas and should experience some instant success. I will be their biggest fan.”
Dolson noted West High’s great academic and athletic reputations for attracting him to the position. “I believe West is a great school with great leadership and a great staff. The VB program has always been strong and I have always had a great rapport with Brez and a great healthy relationship with the players and fans at West. The fans and parents are knowledgeable and supportive, and there is great talent at West. I only want to help them reach their individual and team goals, and take them as far as they wish to go.”
He added, “I only want to keep things going and build on the excellent traditions of West High Volleyball. As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Sure, I’ll incorporate some of my philosophies and methods, but Brez has done an outstanding job and I just hope to continue in her footsteps.” Dolson also said, “I’m sure I will be knocking on her door for some advice and will try to keep her part of the program somehow, and maybe even get her to throw on a uniform and come to practice.”
Dolson said he will reach out to the other coaches on staff.”(We will) see how we can build on these past successes together,” he said.