David Rodgers, Club Director and Coach
David has been playing and coaching volleyball for over 30 years. As we reel in the seasons we realize that volleyball is really about relationships – both on the off the court. Our devotion and commitment to each other will bring out the best in us. It’s not about winning and losing – it’s about becoming YOUR BEST. When you, as an individual, and you, as a team, become your best – amazing results unfold. A nurturing learning experience with “no fear of mistakes” helps you achieve YOUR BEST.
It’s not what you say about yourself, it’s what others say about you that is reality. One parent stated, “I don’t know how he does it. He’s always at least two steps ahead of the rest of us.” To achieve your goal you have to know your destination then, plan a path to get there.
In his early years, David was a sailor so he finds personal meaning in the quote: “We can’t direct the wind, but we can adjust our sails.” – Unknown
His volleyball motto is “Play free and have FUN!”
Kyla Rodgers, Club Director and Coach
Kyla is the club director for Iowa Rockets Volleyball and has been playing volleyball for over 30 years. She was a player at the USAV Women’s AA level and is a USAV Regional Referee, collegiate referee, Men’s Big 10 referee, and a CAP I USAV coach. She has taken teams to the USAV National Tournament, finishing as high as 2nd and 3rd in the nation. In 2003 she led Rockets 15s to a 1st place Regional finish and 3rd place in the Nation! Also, her teams have won National Qualifiers at 15s, 16s, 17s and the 18s level. In 2014 she led her team to a USAV Open division bid at Nationals. In 2015, her (somewhat of an underdog team in 16s) won the GOLD medal in a strong field at Iowa Regionals, completing the season with a great showing at Nationals. Though Kyla is an all-around coach, she specializes in attacking, blocking, and offense. Her larger perspective of the game of volleyball (and life) focuses on coaching the whole girl, learning the whole sport, and working(playing) together.
Greg Allen, Coach
Chin Nguyen, Coach
Chin has been playing volleyball for over 30 years. He was part of the University of Iowa Men’s Club team during college and played at the AA level on a men’s team in Des Moines, Tulsa, & Chicago. He’s been a Rockets coach since 2004 & has also coached in Bend, OR. Chin is a CAP I USAV volleyball coach & has coached at the 12s thru 18s levels. He has captured 1st at Iowa Regionals multiple times and 1st at three National Qualifiers. In 2013 his 18s team brought home a Gold medal by winning a USAV National Championship! Chin was the Iowa Region Coach of the Year in 2012 & joins the ranks of a very few Iowa coaches that has led his/her teams to not one…but two USAV Nationals Open division bids. In 2018, his 13Black & 15R teams both brought home 3rd Place trophies from Nationals in Detroit.
Don Ho Nguyen, Coach
Stacey Ruff, Coach
Stacey has over 25 years of playing and coaching experience at the junior high, high school, club, and collegiate levels. Her tenure has included head coach at Hempstead HS in Dubuque (1997-1998), head and assistant coach at University of Dubuque (1999-2004), head coach at Augustana College in Rock Island, IL (2005-2007) and head coach at Pleasant Valley HS from 2008-2014. In her first year at PV, she led the 2008 team to its first State appearance since 1977 and then two more appearances in 2012 and 2013. Her 2012 team finished with a 38-2 record and a semi-finalist finish at the State tournament. She also established the Pleasant Valley Club Volleyball program in 2008. Her playing career includes one season at Northeast Missouri State (now Truman State) and 3 seasons at University of Dubuque. Ruff was inducted into the University of Dubuque Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006. Stacey Ruff is an AVCA (American Volleyball Coaches Association) member. She has been a Rockets coach since 2009, and has led her teams to numerous top three finishes at the Iowa Region Championship. In 2011 and 2012 her teams captured a USAV Qualifier championship and finished National Runner-up at the 2011 USAV Championships and 3rd place in 2013.
Sarah Anderson (formerly Maynard), Coach
Sarah is in her fifth year with Rockets. In addition to coaching for Rockets she has coached at the junior high level the past five years through the Iowa City Community School District. She played for Rockets throughout her high school years as well as playing for her high school team, City High, where they won State her junior year and qualified for the Iowa HS Tournament her senior year. She graduated from the University of Iowa in 2012 with a degree in Health Science and when she’s not managing the restaurant Micky’s Irish Pub in Iowa City, she enjoys travelling. She has lived out of a backpack throughout Southeast Asia for two month periods twice now! She looks forward to meeting new faces and watching her players grow and succeed both on the court and off!
Kelley Arnold, Coach
Rachel Berkland, Coach
Jurgen Ehler, Coach
Jurgen has been playing volleyball for 25 years. He played on the Iowa State University Men’s Club team and most recently for Team Hollywood a nationally competitive USA Men’s team. Jurgen has coached for TNT Volleyball at Tipton for the past 10 years. His teams have won the Iowa Regionals twice (2013 & 2016) and also finished 3rd (2015) and 5th (2014). He has twice qualified a team for the GJNC in Dallas and New Orleans. Jurgen assisted with Rockets 15-1. He lives in rural Tipton with his wife Mari Anne, a son Rhett (deceased), daughter Blake who competes with Rockets 16-1, and daughter Zane who entered Kindergarten this year. They raise and exhibit livestock across the Midwest. Jurgen is employed by the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship as an FDA/USDA Milk Inspector.
Kelsey (Diltz) Friday, Coach
This is Kelsey’s second year coaching with Iowa Rockets. Kelsey is originally from Iowa City and graduated from Iowa City High School. She went to The University of Iowa and graduated with a Sports Business Degree in 2014. After graduating, she accepted a position at Oklahoma State Athletics working as a Retention Representative for the Athletic Ticket Office handling over 2000 season ticket holder accounts. After a year and a half living in Oklahoma, she decided to move back to Iowa City where she is now teaching for the UI REACH Program, a college program for individuals with disabilities.
Haley Gallagher, Coach
Michelle Garrison, Coach
Michelle was a 4 year starter at Lakeland College, Wisconsin, and Richard Stockton University in new Jersey. Some of her accolades are: Four time 1st team All-Conference, Conference Freshman of the year at Lakeland, Numerous 1st Team All-Tournament Selections, Over 1000 career kills. She also played softball in college and holds many season and career records at Richard Stockton. She was the starting shortstop for Team USA in Germany. (Ok, they don’t have shortstops in volleyball, but she is a woman of the world!) Michelle is starting her fourth year with the Rockets and really enjoys helping the girls improve and watching them compete. She has a husband, Todd, and two daughters, Katy and Molly.
Danica Haight, Coach
Danica is in her 6th year coaching with the Rockets. In addition for coaching for the Rockets she has coached freshman level volleyball for Iowa City West High for two years, as well as the varsity level of Track and Field for five years. She was a multiple sport athlete at Iowa City West, participating in volleyball, track and softball. She went on to do track (shot put and discus) at the University of Michigan graduating in 2011. When she is not coaching or managing the shipping department at Younkers, she enjoys playing in volleyball leagues, watching movies, and doing crafts. Danica loves to coach withe Rockets because she gets to help athletes grow as people and as volleyball players while providing them feedback, regular communication, and a great and fun experience.
Don Jackson, Coach Emeritus
Don joined Iowa Rockets for 9 years after retiring from Procter & Gamble. Don’s love of the game began in college and he is actively involved in playing, coaching, and refereeing. He has 20 years of experience coaching youth sports at all skill levels. For the past 7 years, he has been a Lead coach for our U11/12 teams who have won numerous local and regional championships. In 2017 he led both 12 Black and 13 Black to National Division bids in Minneapolis. Don specializes in developing fundamental skills in our younger players, as well as mentoring our newer coaches. He was also the assistant varsity coach at Clear Creek Amana High School for 6 years. Though he is retired and move to Idaho, his heart is still with Rockets and you will see him again this fall.
Tim Johnson, Coach
Morgan Jorlanlien, Coach
Jason Loughran, Coach
Jaxon Klosterman, Coach
Kelsey McCrea, Coach
Vik Meade, Coach
Taylor (Rockey) Meyer, Coach
Lauren Mikkelsen, Coach
Denise Miller, Coach
Aide Morales, Coach