A year after leading the Cardinal Newman women’s volleyball team to their first division title in school history, Anna Waller has stepped back from her role as head coach. She is still on staff and is now an assistant to new head coach Daryl Kapis.
“We are very happy to have Daryl Kapis leading the program,” Waller told The Press Democrat via text message Thursday evening. “I wanted to be flexible this fall to support my daughter Kimi and her team at UCSB.”
Waller is a prominent figure in the history of Cardinal Newman women’s volleyball. She started the program in 2011, when Ursuline closed and the girls’ school merged with Newman, and coached until 2015, when she stepped away to spend more time with her family. She returned for the 2021 season and coached both Kimi, her eldest daughter, and Julia, her second daughter, for their senior and freshman seasons, respectively.
Both were all-league players, with Kimi being named North Bay League-Oak MVP for the third straight season and earning a scholarship to UC Santa Barbara. As a team, the Cardinal is 28-5 overall with a 10-0 league finish. They went on to win the North Coast Section Division 4 title without dropping a set before falling in the first round of the CIF NorCal Division 1 playoffs.
Kapis comes to Cardinal Newman with a rich and lengthy volleyball resume. His 30-year coaching career has featured stops at every level, from youth clubs to NCAA Division I programs. He started out as a trainer with Archbishop Mitty in the late 1990s and served as the school’s strength and conditioning coordinator. He was also an assistant at San Jose State and UCLA in the early 2000s.
From 2003 to 2006, he was head coach at San Jose City College and led the program until his first and only appearance in a state championship tournament in 2005. He then went to Hawaii Pacific University , an NCAA Division II program, and served as head coach from 2006 to 2016.
He returned to the mainland in the fall of 2016 to take an assistantship at the University of San Francisco, then moved to Sonoma State for the 2017-19 seasons.
In 2020, he started a beach volleyball youth club, Aloha Beach Volleyball Club, and was hired by Cardinal Newman soon after to start their program. This school year, he will lead Cardinal Newman’s indoor and beach teams.
“Obviously I have big shoes to fill from last year’s team,” Kapis said Friday. “I wouldn’t say we’re in a rebuilding phase, but we have challenges ahead and hopefully the level and style of practices that I can bring, along with my staff, can really step up their level of understanding the volleyball game during this year.
“I am delighted to take up the challenge,” he added. “It’s a good challenge for me as a coach to step into something that is challenging for me professionally, so I’m really looking forward to this next step in my coaching career.”
Yesou can contact editor Gus Morris at 707-304-9372 or [email protected] On Twitter @JustGusPD.