At the University of Alberta – Augustana, apprentice Sydney Purdy and mentor Kelly Lyons have teamed up as this year’s only all-female duo in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association’s Female Apprentice Coach Program.
Purdy returned to the Vikings this season after a five-year Women’s Basketball career with Augustana.
The Vikings defeated the Lakeland Rustlers 78-74 in overtime last Saturday and head into the holiday break with a 5-7 record in the ACAC.
For Purdy, it’s been a captivating start to her coaching careers, working alongside Lyons and assistant coach Andria Carlyon.
“Not only do I get to stay involved with the game and team that I love, I am learning so much about basketball from two women who I admire very much,” said Purdy, who has nothing but respect for two role models who share the same passion for the game.
Purdy has quickly learned that coaching is an all-hours kind of job. Tasks have included watching game tape, making scouting reports, booking busses and hotels, preparing practice plans, conducting one-on-one sessions with student-athletes and constantly coming up with new ways to inspire and motivate them.
It’s given her a greater appreciation for the efforts her coaches have always put forward.
“It makes me even more grateful to these coaches for all the time and effort that they have given to their athletes over the years,” said Purdy.
Purdy has also learned first-hand that sports are a male-dominated world.
“If you want to be viewed as a credible female coach in sport, you have to be good,” said Purdy.
“I am thankful that I get to learn from Kelly because she is, to me, the epitome of a competent coach. Her knowledge, confidence and composure are qualities any coach would aspire to possess, and the tools and advice she passes down to me are priceless.”
Purdy is clearly taking advantage of the opportunity to stay involved in a high level of competitive basketball. She has and will continue to learn about the sport as well as herself, both as a leader and a coach.
“Ultimately this experience has helped me grow into a better leader and has strengthened my love for team sports and females in sport,” said Purdy.
Tylar Turnbull, VIU Mariners
The VIU Mariners, defending CCAA Women’s Volleyball National Champions, are off to a sizzling start, sitting atop the PACWEST standings with a 10-2 record. Tylar Turbull, a former CCAA All-Canadian and the most valuable player at CCAA Nationals last March, is working as an apprentice under the guidance of head coach Shane Hyde at Vancouver Island University.