Panther Volleyball – an affordable alternative
By Kathy Fallert; photo courtesy of Stephen Bosco
Oak Hills resident Stephen Bosco, owner and club director of Panther Volleyball Club, started the club five years ago when his stepdaughter was looking for an alternative to other club volleyball organizations. Panther practices are at American Academy in Castle Pines, and the organization supports multi-sport athletes, which other clubs tend not to do.
Bosco remarked, “Thanks to Jen Tucker and Steve Cunningham at American Academy for leasing us a place to play. We wouldn’t have been able to do this without their cooperation.” Panther holds practices for 1 hour and 45 minutes two times per week for 71 athletes on seven teams ranging from U12 to U18. Five of the seven teams travel, competing in at least one out-of-state tournament per year.
“How you run your practice is what counts,” claims Bosco. “Fast-paced, intense practices and conditioning where the players get a lot of touches and repetitions to help correct something that isn’t right.” Tryouts were held in July, and the season runs from November to April at an affordable price tag compared to other clubs. In May, the Panther beach season begins with sand volleyball, and games are played on Bosco’s own sand volleyball court on his five-acre property in Oak Hills.
Bosco’s step-daughter is now a soccer player at Rock Canyon High School and has since retired her volleyball career. However, Bosco, with a history of coaching collegiate volleyball in Connecticut, continues to coach for the Panthers due to his love for the sport and his desire to give back. Bosco maintains his coaching pace by taking vacation from his day job as a business intelligence consultant to attend clinics and tournaments.
The Panther coaches undergo the Coach Accreditation Program sponsored by Team USA Olympics as they strive toward excellence in coaching with most of his coaches having 20 or more years of experience. One U18 Panther player, Kylee Flynn, is currently being mentored for an assistant coaching position. The club’s other coaches are Chuck Ellis, Kevin Lacy, Tracy Wait, Sheri Fling, Dan Tomkinson, Mindy McConnell, Craig Bankowski and Shayne Harris. Panther also brings in celebrity volleyball players, including Diane Pascua (AVP superstar, head coach at Gonzaga), Dax Holdren (AVP superstar, 5th place at Olympics in Athens 2004), Jen Holdren (AVP superstar) and Sean McKeon (All American setter).
To find out more about Panther Volleyball Club, visit www.panthervb.com.