Northern Lights Juniors

Northern Lights Juniors was established in 1993 and is incorporated as a non-profit corporation under section 501 (c)(3). It was formed to provide an environment where, highly motivated and athletically talented, young athletes could get the training and competition needed to help them excel at the high school and collegiate level.  Northern Lights has been very successful in fulfilling this goal in many tangible ways.

Over the years, the level of girl’s volleyball in Minnesota has risen substantially, with participation now at record highs. More Minnesota players are going on to play collegiate volleyball than ever before. Northern Lights Juniors is very proud to provide such great opportunities to young women. Northern Lights is one of the strongest clubs in Minnesota and is recognized nationally as a top program both in terms of achievements as well as recruiting.

Northern Lights players are trained to the highest level possible, and, as a result, our teams end up in many National Championship matches.  Our teams have won 28 National Championships.  For the full picture, please click on our page called By the Numbers.  We are very proud of our players’ accomplishments!

Other reasons Northern Lights is THE girls junior volleyball club in the state of Minnesota include:

Our Facility

All practices take place in one facility – the Midwest Volleyball Warehouse.  The experience of learning from other coaches and athletes becomes the true power of the Warehouse.  Many of our events are also held at the Midwest Volleyball Warehouse – Power League, 12’s Cup, AAU Super Regional, the NL Challenge, and other smaller spring tournaments.

Our Coaches & the Lead Coach system

Perhaps our greatest asset, our coaches are some of the best coaches from across the state of Minnesota.  The amount of experience in our gym is immense.  Our current coaching staff includes coaches who:

  • Have won National Championships (both USAV and AAU)
  • Have won National Qualifiers
  • Coach high school volleyball across the metro
  • Have won a high school state championship
  • Currently or formely coach college volleyball
  • Have coached players who have gone onto play on the National Team or to play internationally
  • Have played collegiate volleyball themselves
  • Regularly attend AVCA or other coach training to keep up with the latest techniques to make your player, their team, and our other coaches better

Over 10 years ago, Northern Lights initiated the group practice for our younger players.  Lead coaches take the reins of these age groups (15s and younger) and run practices as a large group.  These teams practice together on a regular basis and split up for competition.  This allows for consistent skills coaching as well as exposure to more than just the coaches assigned to any one team.

Simplicity & Support

Our offices are located right behind the courts, and communication with players, parents, and staff is instantaneous.  Northern Lights offers seven full-time staff members who help coordinate and plan not only the training portion of your player’s time at Northern Lights, but also help to organize all the other activities (gear, travel, scheduling, entering events, etc.) that go into making a large club run successfully.  

We have also calculated out the cost of the season and communicated it before tryouts even take place.  All uniforms, gear, and travel are already included.  We have no hidden costs and we deliver what we promise.


Our travel schedules are varied depending on the age and level of the team.  Every year, all of our 18’s teams travel to Italy to compete.  Nearly 90% of all our teams will take at least one trip by bus or plane to compete with their team each year.  Regularly seen on our teams’ schedules are the following cities:

  • Rochester, MN
  • Omaha, NE
  • Milwaukee, WI
  • Kansas City, MO
  • Denver, CO
  • Atlanta, GA
  • Orlando, FL
  • Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Rome/Venice/Pordenone/Verona, Italy

Open to New Players

Do you think our teams are set from year to year?  Only once has a Northern Lights team been exactly the same two years in a row!  We routinely welcome new players at all age levels who have not been affiliated with Northern Lights before into our gym.

Exposure & Reputation

Are you interested in playing volleyball after high school?  Northern Lights is known as an elite club among college coaches. We are recognized as a training ground for future collegiate volleyball players.  Over 410 players have graduated from Northern Lights and gone onto play in college on scholarships.

Check out our list of alumni

Check out where some of our current players are committed to go

Among our most distinguished alumni are:

  • Elizabeth “Wiz” Bachman, who graduated from Northern Lights, played at UCLA, and was on the USA National team for 7 years.  2004 Olympic team member.
  • Cassie Busse, who graduated from Northern Lights, played at the University of Minnesota, and played for 3 years on the USA National team.
  • Stephanie Hagen, who graduated from Northern Lights, played at the University of Minnesota, and played for almost 2 years on the USA National team.
  • Lauren Gibbemeyer, who graduated from Northern Lights, played at the University of Minnesota, and has been playing in the USA National Team program for the past 5 years.
  • Tori Dixon (University of Minnesota) is currently training with the National team.
  • Sarah Wilhite (University of Minnesota) is currently training with the National team.
  • Paige Tapp (University of Minnesota) is currently training with the National team.
  • Hannah Tapp (University of Minnesota) is currently training with the National team.
  • Samantha Seliger Swenson (University of Minnesota) is currently training with the National team.
  • Jordan Thompson (University of Cincinnati) is currently training with the National team.