Longtime Our Redeemer's Christian School volleyball coach Sherry Carlson, who helped start the Knights' program in 1996, announced her resignation from the head coaching position Tuesday.
Carlson, who compiled a 225-145-8 record at ORCS, said she expects to help out somewhere in the ORCS program - possibly with the junior-high group - but stepped down from the head position to free up time for her family. Carlson has nine grandchildren, all ages 6 and under.
"I'm in a different season of life," she said. "I want a little bit more time for my grandkids. Any coach knows that it does monopolize a lot of your time. That's in the summer, open gyms, getting (players) to camps. ... It just comes to a point where I want to be free from those responsibilities."
Carlson - a 1975 Minot High School graduate - helped build the fledgling ORCS program into a regional power. The Knights are mainstays at the Region 6 tournament, were state tournament runner-ups in 2004 and finished fifth at state this season.
"She's definitely gonna be tough to replace," ORCS athletic director Jeremy Feller said. "If you come in here and look at our trophy case, you see a lot of volleyball trophies."
Before coming to ORCS, Carlson started the Bishop Ryan program in 1989. After one season there, Carlson spent the first half of the 1990s in Bismarck as an assistant at Century High and Shiloh Christian. She also coached the Solheim Middle School team for a year.
Carlson said she knew the 2012 season would be her last, and a talented Knights squad gave her an appropriate send-off.
"For me, going to state was just icing on the cake," Carlson said. "It was just a blessing to finish the year out that way with a great group of kids. I can say that with pretty much every group I've coached. I just love my groups, I love coaching, I love every aspect of it. I just felt like it was time."
Feller said the five-month lull between season's end and the coach's resignation was the result of him "trying to talk her out of it," but the AD is glad Carlson plans to continue coaching in a lesser capacity.
Interviews for a replacement could begin as soon as next week, Feller said.