Earl Pike moved from his hometown of Windsor in Central NL to Corner Brook in 1960. He started grade 9 at Amalgamated Regional High. (Herdman Collegiate and Corner Brook Regional High).
In grade 9 he was introduced to the sport of volleyball by Mr. Sam Walters and represented Amalgamated for four years. At that time there was not much in the way of Provincial tournaments but the school regularly participated in home and home series with the American Air Force base at Harmon Field in Stephenville. The home and home series usually consisted of playing both Volleyball and Basketball. The volleyball matches were competitive but according to Earl, it was a forgone conclusion regarding the basketball.
In 1964 Earl was off to Memorial University to get his Physical Education Degree. He played a total of five years at Memorial University under head coach Keith Taylor, a NLVA Hall of Fame member and our first NLVA President.
Volleyball was a new sport, and varsity sport at MUN itself was fairly new concept. The team travelled many times to play at other Atlantic Universities and even though they represented MUN well, there were no championship winning teams.
During those five years, Earl also represented Memorial University for five years in wrestling and Cross Country running.
He left University to teach at Herdman 1969-1970 coaching both men’s and women’s teams at Herdman Collegiate. In fact, Earl coached just about every team, male and female, Senior and Junior.
In 1971 after finishing his last year at university, he returned to Corner Brook and taught at Templeton Collegiate for one year where he coached male and female volleyball as well.
In 1972 Earl got a full time position at G.A. Mercer Jr High and coached volleyball there for 26 years until it closed in 1998. He coached at GC Rowe for one last year then retired in 1999.
Earl does remember quite a few city championships when G.A Mercer, Presentation Jr High, Curling Jr. High and G.C. Rowe played off locally. He also remembers many invitational and provincial championship wins. A few of those included Presentation and G.C. Rowe returning home with medals as well. He can’t remember all of the tournaments over the years, but he can remember his athletes. One thing he finds quite easy to point out. G.A. Mercer won 3 Dalhousie Jr. High Championships with him coaching.
In his words, he had wonderful players and Earl was proud to have been part of encouraging young people to play ball and to work among fellow volleyball enthusiasts like George Buckle and Hubert Rowe.