Coach with state championship pedigree takes over Dallastown girls' volleyball program

Joe Ramp is shown here during his days coaching the West York HIgh School girls' volleyball program. Ramp was recently approved as the next girls' volleyball head coach at Dallastown.

After stepping down as the West York High School girls’ volleyball head coach in 2019, Joe Ramp knew he would be back on the bench — somewhere, sometime.

When the head-coaching position opened up at Dallastown this winter, after longtime coach Shannon Werner stepped down, the answers to the where-and-when questions quickly became clear.

Ramp applied for the job and earlier this month was approved as the next head coach of the Wildcats' program.

“Last year was interesting, not coaching,” Ramp said. “It was also different. I was kind of thankful I wasn’t there coaching during this whole COVID thing, because I know that takes a lot out of a coach. Just changing schedules and the inability to practice … it’s just a lot.”

Ramp stepped down after nine years at West York, which included a PIAA Class 3-A state title in 2018. Initially, he planned to spend more free time with his 5-year-old daughter, Ellie. The coronavirus, however, threw a monkey wrench into those plans. The activities he and his wife had planned were not viable.

“We wanted to start getting her into athletics, maybe soccer or gymnastics, but then COVID hit,” he said. “And that pretty much shut everything down.”

With the anticipation that the COVID limitations should ease by the summer and fall, combined with the fact that the Dallastown position was open, helped solidify Ramp’s desire to get back into coaching at the high school level.

It also helped that Werner had built Dallastown into one of the league's better programs over her 20 years at the helm.

“This was a good opportunity to get back into it,” Ramp said. “I missed being around the girls and the enjoyment that I had with them and we had a long decision-making process to just figure out if this was the right time or not.”

Former Eastern York coach to assist Ramp: Ramp is also excited about having former Eastern York coach Jen Reichard sign on to be one of his assistants next fall.

“Jen and I work together at River Rock Academy,” Ramp said. “And I used to coach her daughter, Lauren, in club before she went off to college. Ever since (Lauren) went off to college, Jen kind of stopped coaching, but I’ve been on her over the past couple of years to get back into it.”

With Ramp taking over at Dallastown, a friendly game of bragging rights is expected to take place this fall. Central York coach Nate Ocasio is also one of Ramp’s peers at River Rock.

“I can’t wait,” said Ramp, who noted that Ocasio’s Panthers should be pretty strong this fall. “He may have the upper hand this year, but we’ll still have some fun.”

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