About Us

2016-17 Handbook >


Circle City Volleyball Club was originated by Tom Pingel in 1984. In its first season, Circle City Volleyball Club fielded 35 athletes on 3 teams (one 18 & under, two 16 & under) and 3 coaches. Now Circle City is much larger than the size of the original version. Offering teams in age groups 10 & under through 18, the Circle City Volleyball Club has become one of the largest clubs to attempt to meet the needs of the various levels of volleyball athletes.

USA Volleyball is the governing body for competitive volleyball in the United States. In 1981, it made a commitment to provide opportunities for young players to play outside of their school programs and in 1991 created a Division of the USAV exclusively devoted to Youth & Junior Olympic Volleyball development. The USAV states that junior volleyball programs represented... "the future of volleyball in the US." [Its junior program] was created to serve as a major building block for scholastic, collegiate, recreational and club play throughout the country.

Circle City Volleyball Club is one of a very small number of clubs that promotes all of the goals set forth by USA Volleyball. Most clubs are geared either for elite athletes, or for less skilled players. Our graduates have played in the US Olympic Festival and have represented USA on the Youth National Team. Many have played on top-ranked college teams. Many have also been All-State or All-American in High School. On the other hand, many of our players enrolled are just trying to make their school’s team. Our training group allows players of all skill levels to learn, improve, and progress at a pace they can achieve. We have 7 courts under one roof that are used for volleyball.

What We Provide

  • A good training ground provided by experienced coaches
  • Olympic techniques for advancement of volleyball skills
  • A high profile among high schools and colleges
  • A great training facility highly focused on volleyball
  • Assistance with the college recruiting process

Some of Our Accomplishments

  • Over 250 teams qualified for Junior Olympics
  • 100 qualified Open US Junior National teams
  • Over 490 scholarships received

Why Play Junior Volleyball?

Junior volleyball programs have exploded all across the country. The first AAU National tournament was held over 30 years ago, and only 20 teams made the trip. Last season, there were more than 100,000 registered junior players in the United States.

Why this incredible growth? There are many factors, but the overall growth of women’s sports programs is important. As women’s collegiate programs have prospered, the level of play has increased greatly. The average level of ability of junior players has increased as well. So successful are junior program athletes that most NCAA Division I coaches recruit exclusively from the junior program ranks. The reason for this is simple. Coaches can see many solid prospects in a single day at a junior tournament, while it is difficult to see more than one prospect a day during the high school season. This becomes even more true with the NCAA rules governing the number of times a collegiate coach can contact or observe in person a given player.

Is junior volleyball only for the college bound athlete? Certainly not! Our program begins in the first grade. Who can say whether these kids are even headed for college at all, let alone to play volleyball? For most of our members, junior volleyball is simply another challenging experience which should lead to a lot more fun on the court as playing skills increase. Playing for college teams is far from the minds of most our players. Traditionally, nearly half of our program has been comprised of players in the 16 & under age division (freshmen and sophomores). In most cases, these players have recently been exposed to high school programs and a higher level of competition than they have previously experienced. Many new applicants are freshmen team or junior varsity players who are trying to move up a level for next season. We have a training program designed to help them do just that. We can help, but much of an individual’s advancement and improvement is still up to that individual. Athletic talent, size, speed and good work habits are all necessary for top success as an elite player. Players who lack in any of those qualities have to make up for the deficiency in one area by working harder to improve another. If you’ve got a sincere desire to improve, then you will do well in a junior volleyball program.

So what about scholarships? Well, they do exist, and many of our players go on to play in college; most of these receive partial or full scholarships. About 98% of our graduating seniors become college athletes. Let’s put that in true perspective, though. Many more players are involved in Circle City Volleyball Club as underclassmen than as seniors. By the time the senior season is reached, players usually know whether they have the ability and the desire to compete at the college level.

In conclusion, club volleyball is a great place to meet friends, sweat a lot, get lost trying to find gyms, and feel good about yourself. If you want to experience that, join us for the upcoming season!

The Circle City Program

The Circle City Program consists of 3 practices a week ranging from 5:30pm to 10pm during the week. Sunday practices can be as early as noon and will also go in two hour increments. We expect all our coaches to commit to using this time to help your daughter improve by emphasizing individual skills first and then building toward team skills. Each of our teams will play about two tournaments a month, which will result in 40-60 matches a year. Other benefits from being included in the Circle City program are full access to recruiting aides, full access to the fitness center (Capitol Sports Fitness), top level uniform and apparel provided by Nike (minimum 2 jerseys, spandex, kneepads, socks, warm-ups and athletic bag), and the USAV Membership and Insurance. Hopefully, with the commitment of great players and coaches, we will continue to build an environment of fairness, improvement, fun and happiness!

2016-17 Tryouts and Tryout Procedure

Age First Tryout Date Time
9-12 & Under Sunday, October 23, 2016 2:30-4:00pm
13 & Under Sunday, October 23, 2016 4:30-6:30pm
14 & Under Sunday, October 23, 2016 12:00-2:00pm
15 & Under Sunday, November 6, 2016 10:00am-12:00pm
16 & Under Sunday, November 6, 2016 4:30-6:30pm
17-18 & Under Sunday, November 6, 2016 7:00-9:00pm

Additional dates and times will be posted on the home page when available. It is recommended to come to as many dates as possible. Please bring to tryouts a copy of your birth certificate, shirt with school and name on it, a small picture, and patience. The tryout process will last 4-6 dates. Teams will be picked by Thanksgiving and players will be contacted by their coaches as soon as possible. After players have been contacted and teams are set, parent meetings and practice dates will be set, usually beginning around the start of December.

Age Group Classifications

The following age groups shall be in effect for athletes for the 2016-17 season:

  • 18 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 1998, or were high school students in the 12th grade or below during the current academic year and are 19 years of age or younger (born on or after September 1, 1997).
  • 17 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 1999.
  • 16 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 2000.
  • 15 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 2001.
  • 14 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 2002.
  • 13 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 2003.
  • 12 & Under Division: Players who were born on or after September 1st, 2004.

Age group definitions above are binding for the entire season immediately preceding the USAV Junior National Championships, and there shall be no appeal. Players may play “up” in an age group but never down.

Club Fees & Estimated Tournament Costs

Each player will have 3 options on payment plans. The first payment, regardless of the team or plan, will be $350. The payment is due on the first try-out date for each age level.

Each player will have two options for making payments. Parents can either sign-up to have their credit card processed automatically each month or have the bank account debited each month. Payments will be automatically processed by the office on the 20th of each month for any invoices billed before the 20th of the previous month.


Estimated Tournament Costs

The following estimates are based off of the tournaments entered in the 2016 season.

15-18 N 14-15 P 14 N 13 N 13 P 12 N
$425-$550 $350-$500 $375-$490 $350-$450 $255-$325 $250-$300


Plan A

Regular payment schedule. Player’s will be invoiced on the 20th of each month for their monthly club fee. Tournament costs and travel expenses will be invoiced as they are incurred.

Due Date 15-18 N 14 N 13 N 12 N 12 W 11 P
1st Tryout $350 $350 $350 $350 $350 $350
Dec. 20th $430 $350 $290 $230 n/a $190
Jan. 20th Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees Tourn Fees Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees
Feb.20th $430 $350 $290 $230 $250 $190
Mar. 20th $430 $350 $290 $230 $150 $190
Apr. 20th $430 $350 $290 $230 $150 $190
May 20th $430 $350 $290 $230 n/a $190
Total $2,500 $2,100 $1,800 $1,500 $900 $1,300


Plan B

Spread the monthly club fees over a period of one year beginning with the registration fee in November, 2016, and continuing payments through October, 2017. All tournament costs and travel expenses will need to be paid in full each month. If a player sustains an injury, a prorated cost of the club fees will still need to be fulfilled by the player.

Due Date 15-18 N 14 N 13 N 12 N 11 P
1st Tryout $350 $350 $350 $350 $350
Dec.10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Jan. 10th Tourn Fees. Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees Tourn. Fees
Feb. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Mar. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Apr. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
May 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Jun. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Jul. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Aug. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Sep. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Oct. 10th $220 $185 $155 $125 $105
Total $2,550 $2,200 $1,900 $1,600 $1,400


Plan C

Save money by paying the entire year’s club fees at registration. Players will still receive monthly bills for tournaments and travel expenses. If a player sustains an injury, a prorated refund of club fees will require a doctor’s note stating the injury prevents the player from finishing the season.

  15-18 N 14 N 13 N 12 N 12 W 11 N
One payment $2,350 $2,000 $1,700 $1,300 $900 $1200


What is NOT covered by the fees

  • Tournament Entry Fees: These are charged on a pro-rata basis according to the cost of the events a player’s team attends. Players who miss an event that their team attends will still be responsible for their share of the entry fee. These will be due January 10th.
  • Tournament Expenses: Costs for lodging, if attending a tournament requiring overnight travel, are billed as required. The coach’s travel and hotel expenses are in addition to team fees.
  • Transportation: Travel to tournaments is not covered.

Coaching Method

For the first portion of practices, players will work on individual skills. Our players may be grouped by position to work in more of a controlled environment. We are geared to ensure that each player is being taught the correct technique while also making sure that the Circle City ideals and principles are being emphasized by each and every coach in our program. Practices will then focus on team concepts and game scenarios.

Tournament Schedule

Circle City works very hard with each team’s players and parents in order to make an affordable and appropriate schedule for their team. While other clubs try to limit their schedules to either JVA or USA events, we will do what is best for each individual team. The majority of the tournaments that our teams participated in were within a reasonable driving distance. Other clubs claim that we are more expensive because we participate in USA Volleyball, but that is incorrect. While we do support USA Volleyball and the US National Teams by registering our teams with USA Volleyball, we work hard at running tournaments almost every week and this helps us keep our fees significantly lower at all levels than any of the other major clubs in the area. We also have comparable or fewer hotel room nights per player and our teams do not travel any more or any farther than those clubs.


Circle City will continue to be sponsored by Nike. Nike is well known to be a leading force in sports and is a natural partner with Circle City Volleyball, one of the leading volleyball clubs in the nation.

Club Highlights

U.S. Junior Nationals

1st Place

2000: Circle City 17-1
2001: Circle City 15-2
2005: Circle City 17-1
2006: Circle City 15-1

2nd Place

1993: Circle City 18-1
1995: Circle City 16-2
1997: Circle City 17-1
2000: Circle City 18-2
2001: Circle City 17-1
2006: Circle City 18-1

3rd Place

1996: Circle City 18-1
1997: Circle City 18-1
1999: Circle City 16-1
2001: Circle City 18-1
2004: Circle City 14-2
2009: Circle City 15-1
2011: Circle City 16-1
2014: Circle City 18-1
2016: Circle City 15-1

All Americans

Year Recipient(s)
1985 Lisa Dillman and Laura Linder
1987 Lisa Dillman
1988 Stephanie Bowers
1993 Heather Wright, Heidi Rottinghaus, Sarah Oesterling, and Brooke White
1995 Heather Wright, Kristy Burns, Julie Groves
1996 Heather Wright, Meghan Stout
1997 Tanya Canak, Erica Lear, Cheryl Berg, Bryn Gallagher, Kristy Burns, Heather Wright
1998 Erica Watson
1999 Jennifer Gandolph, Christy Utnage
2000 Christy Utnage, Daren Poe, Caron Blotch, Melissa Brewer, Maggie Beck, Sarah Frost, Jackie Neely, Amanda Hess
2001 Ellen Rehme, Allyne Rebholz, Ashley Buckingham, Caron Blotch, Lauren Berg, Erin Jones, Danielle Vinup, Natalie Macgill, Kendal Dedinsky
2003 Alex Montefalco, Emily Schroeder, Sarah Gray
2005 Danielle Goodnight, Mikindra Morin,MVP Hillary Houston
2006 Carolyn Holstein, Hillary Houston, Megan Rehmer, Paige Weber, Shea Doran, Holly Wasmund, Bailey Yeager, MVP Kelly Faris
2009 Katie Griffin, Cassie Annee, Hadley Orr, Jackie Neely, Amanda Hess
2011 Rachel Griffin, Abby Shade, Stacy Silvers
2014 Azariah Stahl, Danielle Cuttino, Melanie McHenry, Callé Weddle
2015 Jade Humphrey, Rachel Funkhouser
2016 Caitlyn Baird, Brooklyn Phillips, Elise Carmichael


USA Youth National / USA Junior National Team

Year Recipient(s)
1992 Heidi Rottinghaus
1993 Maureen Reindl
1994 Emily Stout, Tamika Johnson
1997 Heather Wright
1999 Cara Smith, Allyne Rebholz
2000 Allyne Rebholz
2001 Jennifer Gandolph, Lauren Ford, Katelyn Bishop
2002 Katelyn Bishop
2003 Katelyn Bishop, Sarah Gray
2004 Kristina Johnson, Sarah Gray
2006 Paige Weber
2011 Carly Cramer (A2)
2012 Azariah Stahl
2013 Danielle Cuttino
2015 Madison Smeathers (A1), Cortney Vanliew (A1)
2016 Madison Hammill (Select A1), Caitlin Baird (Training Team)


Volleyball Magazine Fab 50

Year Recipient(s)
1995 Emily Stout
1996 Tamika Johnson
2000 Cara Smith
2001 Jennifer Gandolph, Allyne Rebholz, Ellen Rehme, Katelyn Bishop
2009 Katie Griffin
2014 Danielle Cuttino, Azariah Stahl
2015 Shavona Cuttino


Indiana Gatorade Player of the Year

Year Recipient(s)
‘99-‘00 Cara Smith
‘00-‘01 Allyne Rebholz
‘03-‘04 Katelyn Bishop
‘06-‘07 Paige Weber
‘13-‘14 Azariah Stahl


PrepVolleyball.com High School All-Americans

Year Recipient(s)
2003 Katelyn Bishop, Moira McCarthy, Alex Montefalco, Natalie Mullikin
2004 Emily Schroeder
2006 Lauren McIntyre, Paige Weber
2008 Katie Griffin
2010 Ellyn Jones
2011 Beth Prince
2012 Beth Prince, Azariah Stahl
2013 Beth Prince, Azariah Stahl, Callé Weddle
2014 Bailey Western
2015 Melanie McHenry, Madison Smeathers, Taylor Hammill (High Honorable Mention), Makenzie Hinshaw (Special Hon. Mention), Cortney Vanliew (Special Honorable Mention)


PrepVolleyball.com Club All-Americans

Year Recipient(s)
2013 Azariah Stahl, Melanie McHenry
2014 Danielle Cuttino, Azariah Stahl, Callé Weddle
2015 Caitlin Baird, Brooklyn Phillips, Madison Smeathers



PrepVolleyball.com Senior Aces (Top Recruits in the Nation)

Year Recipient(s)
2006 Danielle Goodnight
2007 Rebecca Murray, Jessica Wolfe, Paige Weber, Kristen Seaton, Lauren McIntyre
2008 Katie Griffin
2009 Lauren Baumet
2011 Molly Spitnagle
2012 Kayla Ostrom
2013 Danielle Cuttino, Azariah Stahl
2014 Shavona Cuttino, Beth Prince, Callé Weddle
2015 Madison Smeathers, Melanie McHenry

Under Armour All-Americans

Year Recipient(s)
2015 Melanie McHenry, Madison Smeathers


Andi Collins Award (Best Setter in the Nation)

Year Recipient(s)
2007 Paige Weber


ESPN National Freshman of the Year

Year Recipient(s)
2011 Beth Prince