National championship is last hurrah for longtime Manitoba Bisons coach Garth Pischke

The University of Manitoba Bisons are hosting next week’s national championship in men’s volleyball, but it’ll also be a going away party for longtime coach Garth Pischke.

Pischke, 64, is retiring after an incredible 38 seasons as bench boss of the Bisons men’s volleyball team.

“It’s been getting close for a few years,” Pischke said.

“Really, the fact we had the opportunity to host the national championships at the University of Manitoba is really kinda the way to go out, I think.”

With over 1,300 career victories, Pischke is the winningest volleyball coach in North America.

Pischke was just as successful at coaching as he was as a player. He represented Canada at two different Olympic games in 1976 and 1984 along with being hired by the Bisons in 1979.

Winnipeg’s Scott Koskie played for Pischke for a decade. Pischke coached Koskie for six seasons with the Bisons, and another four years with the national team.

And Koskie believes it was Pischke’s drive to be the best that made him the coach that he is.

“He was one of the best players in North America and in the world at that time,” Koskie said. “He just brought that expectation every day into the gym.

“He wanted us to do the same thing. Not for him, but for us. He had done all those things and he took such pride, I think, in seeing us make strides, and win matches, and develop confidence, and grow as athletes and as people.”

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