Orlov manages way back to preps sports

  • Blake Orlov

    Blake Orlov

 
 
Updated 9/25/2017 4:14 PM

When he was playing middle for Stevenson's Class AA state runner-up boys volleyball team in 2000, Buffalo Grove native Blake Orlov never imagined one day he would be coaching a varsity high school girls volleyball team.

But 17 years later, that's exactly what has happened.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The 6-foot-5 native of Buffalo Grove is the first year girls volleyball coach at Deerfield High School.

"Like I told the team when I got here, the right job opened up for me and it was right in the area where I live," Orlov said. "It's the place I wanted to be."

It's not far from where he has been for the past 12 years.

Orlov is the founder of the Chicago Bounce Volleyball Club, which is about a 10-minute drive from Deerfield High School.

"I literally go right from high school practice with the girls to practice with our boys at the club at night," he said.

At Stevenson, Orlov played for coach Leanne Ulmer, for whom he later served as an assistant at Carthage College.

Coaching got in his blood when he attended Arizona.

Although he didn't receive any big-time college scholarships, he played on a national club championship team at Arizona and he was the manager for the school's men's volleyball team.

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That proved to be an invaluable experience.

"I never realized how much you could learn on how to run a program while being the manager for a college team," he said. "You work with video equipment, setting up nets and being involved with the practices. You ride the bus and learn all the little things that matter.

"It's obviously an opportunity to be involved with a Division I program, it's just in a different way. It really helped prepare me for what I'm doing now."

Now Orlov is back at the high school level where he was an all-area player for Stevenson.

"It's surreal," he said. "I didn't think this would ever happen. But once I got to coaching (started at TNT Club when he returned from Arizona) I knew I found something I loved.

"I turned something I loved into a business. There's the saying you should be happy with what you're doing, And I found the thing that makes me happy."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Men's tennis

Augustana sophomore Scott Daluga (Libertyville) was a double winner (No. 2 doubles and No. 7 singles) at the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Fall Tournament as the Vikings won seven of 12 contested flights and 31 of 39 individual matches.

At No. 7 singles, Daluga dropped just one game in defeating Illinois Wesleyan's Sid Saxena and Patrick Zaker of Carthage to reach the finals.

Women's volleyball

Millikin's Marie Gerbasi (Grayslake Central) had 8 kills when the Big Blue defeated Heidelberg 3-0 in its (26-24, 25-16, 25-20) Wittenberg Fall Classic in Springfield, Ohio.

Women's soccer

Millikin's Joslynn Smith (Grayslake Central) had 2 assists in the Big Blue's 3-2 overtime win at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Ind.

Women's cross country

Augustana junior Laura McNair (Lake Zurich) took 31st (20:20.1) and classmate Mackenzie Renihan (Vernon Hills) was 48th (20:44.2) in 48th place at the Brissman-Lundeen Invitational at Saukie Golf Course in Rock Island. The Vikings placed third in the 17-team event which was run with the temperature hovering near the 90-degree mark. Wisconsin-Stevens Point won the meet with 76 points.

• Email Sports Notes items to jleusch@dailyherald.com.

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