Allen Alexander

Allen Alexander

Club Director, Coach

 • USA Volleyball Certified Coach
• Robert L Lindsay Meritorious Service Award from USA Volleyball
• Double-Goal Coach Certified by Positive Coaching Alliance
• SafeSport Certified/CPR & First Aid Certified

Allen Alexander, owner and coach, established The Sand Club in 2008 and has officiated well over 1000 sand volleyball matches. Before The Sand Club, Coach Allen was an instructor from 1999-2003 and program director for Leona Group Arizona, LLC. In 2003-2004, he developed an entire coarse curriculum for East Valley Institute of Technology. Coach Allen applies his years of experience in preparing daily lesson plans to his coaching. In 2009, Coach Allen established The Starter Club for youth volleyball players that did not make their school volleyball team and young aspiring beach volleyball athletes.  Then in 2010, Allen started networking with professional beach volleyball players to offer more advanced training for The Starter Club players that were looking for something more, which lead to The Sand Club Academy in 2014.

Coach Allen is originally from Milwaukee Wisconsin and is married to Heather Alexander with two daughters Gabby and Kylie. When he is not playing, officiating, or coaching volleyball he is enjoying his family. During the mornings, Coach Allen runs a web company with his wife. Coach Allen loves pizza and stand-up comedy.

Claudio Gonzalez

Claudio Gonzalez

Associate Director, Coach

 • USA Volleyball IMPACT Certified Coach
• Beach Cap 1 Certified Coach
• The Starter Club Coach of the Year 2012 & 2013
• AVPNext/First Tournament Director

Since joining The Sand Club Academy coaching staff in 2012, Coach Dio has been accredited for helping players make their school volleyball team by promoting good character and a foundation of volleyball fundamentals.  Before the Sand Club, Coach Dio worked in different capacities of the insurance field with most of the time spent as a trainer, where he picked up the teaching and motivation skills he uses on the court.

Coach Dio is an Arizona native and spends most of his off time running sanctioned tournaments, including being a part of the 2016 AVPFirst National Championship. He is “your Wikipedia of international beach volleyball” and enjoys traveling, attending this year’s AVP Pro Tour Championship in Chicago.

Katie Tomsyck

Katie Tomsyck

Head Coach

• USA Volleyball Certified Coach
• 2017 AVPNext Mountain West Region Champion
• 5th Ranked in Digs Sophomore Year in College
• Assistant Coach at Viterbo University, LaCrosse WI

Coach”K”, Katie Tomsyck was a 4 year starter and 3 year captain in college as a libero.  Her sophomore year she was ranked 5th in her conference for digs.  Throughout college she coached an indoor 18’s club team and later was the assistant coach for 2 years at a University in LaCrosse Wisconsin.  She is a USA volleyball certified coach and voted the top upcoming 2015 AAA EVP beach volleyball player here in Arizona.  In 2014, Katie played six women’s 2’s sand volleyball tournaments with the Arizona EVP and ranked 2nd in AA points.  In 2016, Katie finished 4th overall of the AVPNext Mountain West Region.

Jansen Button-John

Jansen Button-John

Head Coach

• USA Volleyball Certified Coach
• 2015 All-American from Georgia State University
• Made President’s and Dean’s List
• 2012 USAV Beach High Performance Team

Jansen Button was a standout athlete at Georgia State University earning All-American by the AVCA in 2015, who is now Jansen Button-John after recently marring Ulrick John.  Jansen, originally from Manifee California, is 100% about beach volleyball playing for the California Beach Volleyball Association (CBVA).  In 2012, Jansen was the top ranked CBVA player (under 18 years of age) winning 11 tournaments and 22 top 3 finishes. Button went on to earn a second-place finihs at the USA Beach Junior National Tour in Chicago and third-place finish at the USAV High Performance Championship.  Jansen is currently working on a “College Prep” training program for The Sand Club Academy.

Milani Pickering

Milani Pickering

Head Coach

• 2017 AVPNext Mountain West Region Champion
• College Beach Volleyball Player at Georgia State University
• Made President’s and Dean’s List
• Team Captain for USA Beach Exchange Program in Russia

Milani Pickering is an Arizona native, leading her Mountain View Toros to the state playoffs with a 12-0 record.  In 2008, Pickering was selected for the USA Beach Bilateral Exchange in Russia and a team captain.  In 2011, Milani qualified  for the USAV Beach High Performance Championship. Her high school experience and grades earned her a scholarship to Georgia State University, where Milani was of the first college beach volleyball players.  At GSU, Milani continued to impress coaches with her academics by making the President’s and Dean’s Lists as well as the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll in 2006.  Milani is currently finishing her internship and will part of building the fitness and nutrition program for The Sand Club Academy in December 2016.

Melody Rayne

Melody Rayne

Certified Trainer & Fusionetics Coach

Melody Rayne, ISSA certified trainer and USA beach volleyball certified coach, brings the exciting new technology of corrective exercises of Fusionetics. Melody started competing at a very young age and became a tennis touring pro at the age of 17, including the events in Australia other parts of the world. Melody shares her pro-training experience with today’s most advanced training that colleges and professional teams are using.

Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Melody moved to Arizona to pursue her professional tennis career and her previous career as a commercial pilot. She now resides at her mini ranch complete with horses, donkeys, chickens, dogs, and cats.

Braden Beretta

Braden Beretta

Head Coach

Braden Beretta is a native to Arizona, growing up in Gilbert, who concentrated on his academics after high school by graduating with honors from Arizona State University. After earning his Bachelor’s Degree, Braden has been working for Boeing for the last 10 years. In 2012, Braden started training with local professional beach volleyball players and started playing competitively for the AVPNext in 2013. Coach Braden is a USA Volleyball certified coach and one of our head coaches for the 14’s Beach Team.

Sydney Palmer

Sydney Palmer

Showcase Coach

Sydney Palmer currently plays for the Arizona State University Sun Devil’s sand volleyball team, receiving All-Tournament-Team for the opening tournament at University of Arizona and the 2nd seed in 2016. Sydney is originally from Southern California with coaches like Matt Taylor (3-time National Champion at UCLA) and Valinda Roche (13-year AVP Pro and Misty May’s first partner). The Sand Club Academy is excited to have this SoCal native help shape the minds of young beach volleyball players.

Frances Giedraitis

Frances Giedraitis

Showcase Coach

Frances also currently plays for the Arizona State University Sun Devil’s sand volleyball team, becoming the 4th 20-game winner in team history last season in only her sophomore year with coaching from (1996 Olympian) Deb Rose.  Pac-12 announced Frances as part of the All-Academic First Team for the 2016 inaugural beach season with a GPA of 3.92 in biological studies. In high school, Frances was on the USA Volleyball High Performance Sand Volleyball Team, with training from coaches like (former AVP Pro) Claire D’Amore.  The Sand Club Academy is proud to have this intelligent and talented Tucson native as part of the coaching staff whenever she is available to assist.