YULA Girls High School

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Meet the Staff & Coaches

A Note from the Director of Athletics:
 
One of my goals is to increase the number of student-athletes each year while also creating a true student- athlete culture of connection felt by everyone involved throughout the journey. Increasing the fan support from students, parents and friends is something that I will strive towards as well. Creating greater school spirit towards athletics and implementing the idea of person before player, and where “we” makes, “me” stronger, is very important. Person before player and life over sport are both a reminder that YULA Girls Athletics will always place greater value on who the individual is off the court vs. what they can do on it. Trust, sacrifice, selflessness, team, accountability, responsibility, passion, and joy are just a handful of traits that we are hoping to instill in your daughter throughout their athletic experience at YULA Girls.
 
 
Sincerely,
Alexandra Novak
 
Meet the Staff & Coaches
 
Alexandra Novak
Director of Athletics
 

As an LA native, she grew up in Agoura Hills playing Volleyball, Basketball and Softball for Agoura High. I received her BA in Communications and Psychology from San Diego State University and her Masters Degree in Athletic Administration/Sports Management from Indiana University Bloomington. Novak was a Division 1 college athlete competing on the Women's Rowing team at SDSU. She also spent some time studying in Israel at Neve Yerushalyim in Har Nof.

The Majority of her career has been spent in both college and professional athletics. She worked at UCLA in Recruiting and Special Events for athletics and at Pepperdine as the Manager of Sales and Service for their athletic department. Following her time in College Athletics she spent 5 years working with the LA Clippers in Sales and Service where she created Jewish Heritage Night. The 49ers were her next stop working with the team and the Super Bowl before she  came back down to LA to be the Manager of Premium Sales for LAFC. For over a decade she has held many positions with the JCC Maccabi games from being a basketball and soccer coach to the delegation head, which is the position she currently holds. Competing in the games herself is why she wants to help recreate her experience here with the games. Novak is also an adjunct professor teaching online course in Sports Management. My vision is to turn YULA Girls Athletics into a destination where young Orthodox girls want to go, in order to compete on one or more of our 8 Varsity athletic programs.

 

Angelica Justiniano

Cross Country Coach - Track and Field Coach

 

Angelica Justiniano has been a women’s cross country coach and women’s soccer coach since June 2011. Her primary responsibilities include coaching, guiding and leading students to apply to the very best colleges based on academics and sports. Ms. Justiniano has seven years of experience building competitive soccer and cross country teams for a quality intercollegiate athletic program at Narbonne High School, Mark Keppel High School, and Morningside High School. Ms. Justiniano managed the Varsity and Junior Varsity program by recruiting, and developing talent for future Varsity levels and winning the Junior Varsity Championship at the end of her 4th year. She is actively involved in faculty, athletic, and student affairs committees. Ms. Justiniano enjoys inspiring others to commit to long-term health and fitness goals, and is experienced in all facets of competitive sports programs. She enjoys teaching others the mantra that discipline, consistency and hard-work is the foundation to become a successful individual.

 

 

Spencer Wall

Tennis Coach

 

Mr. Wall is really excited to coach at YULA Girls, and hopes anyone who is interested in tennis will come and try out! Mr. Wall has coached at Brentwood as the varsity tennis high school assistant coach and at Crossroads as the head varsity coach. At Brentwood the boys team won 3 CIF titles and the girls team made the CIF semifinals one season. At Crossroads the boys and girls teams went to CIF each year. We want to have a successful team but the most important goals are for the players to have a productive and enjoyable season and to display good sportsmanship in competition. Mr. Wall’s favorite memory is playing competitive tennis on his high school team, where they won the Virginia Prep high school team title twice and was all-Virginia three times; however, just competing and working hard taught him many valuable lessons whether he won matches or not. Mr. Wall hopes that the players can have a similar experience this fall.

 

 

Alexandria Maldonado

Varsity and JV Volleyball Coach

 

My volleyball journey began at eight years old with playing on the grass with my older sisters, to signing up for my first park team. During my intermediate years, my team consistently placed in the top eight of the CYO tournament, with one year taking 2nd and another taking 8th place. During my club years, my team placed consistently in the top twenty out of six hundred teams in the National Volleyball Festival every year, with one year taking the 5th place spot. During my high school years, I landed the starting setter position with my team taking first place in the league, and was named 1st Team All-Almont League senior year and 2nd Team All-Almont League junior year. Through volleyball, I have found that with playing a sport, I must enhance and utilize commitment, hard work, dedication, personal skills, and life skills.  With this mindset, I am passionate in coaching the fundamental basics, to a highly competitive travel team level, to preparing these young athletes for the next step after high school, not only athletic wise, but academically and morally as well. With a BA in Psychology & Social Behavior, 5+ years coaching, and 10+ year playing volleyball, I am more than confident, determined, and excited to create the next amazing generation of volleyball players, and young adults.

 

 
Noga Wind
Women's Varsity Soccer Coach
 

I was born and raised in Jerusalem, and was a professional soccer player in the Women's League and on Israel's National Soccer Team. After suffering an injury I was forced to quit and decided to pursue my dreams as an actor and educator. I completed my national service as a counselor for homeless youth at risk in Tel Aviv, and then moved to the U.S to pursue my Bachelors in Theater at California Institute of the Arts. I am thrilled to join the YULA Girls family and to share my deep passion and love for soccer. As athletes we gain tools that will change our life, such as confidence building, team work, overcoming challenges, and developing a strong sense of self and responsibility. I build practices that focus on fitness, technique and strategy, using tools that simultaneously develop team building and healthy communication. My coaching technique is rooted in mutual respect. I believe that if a player enjoys their training, feels valued and respected, they will want to invest more in the sport and have a higher success rate. I am excited to build a powerful soccer team with YULA Girls, and to give each player the positive experience I believe every teenage athlete should have. 

 
Tyus Tillman
Basketball Coach

 

I started playing when I was 14 years old and went to Los Angeles High School playing Varsity my senior year. I attended SMC and then received a basketball scholarship from Northwest Christian University in Eugene Oregon. After graduation, I had the opportunity to play in Essen Germany the summer of 2005. After my playing days, I still wanted to be around the sport, so I continued to play in the Venice Beach Basketball and Drew League. But I felt my passion wasn’t being met. My passion is deep with teaching the fundamentals of basketball, I have created. I have a concept that I would like to lead a team with. I want to stress the value footwork, fundamentals, and repetition to show what hard work and dedication to the detail will do for a team. I want our drills to be our offense so the game can be second nature. We participate in drills that are in game situations and fundamentally sound and drilled. Our Defense is what we pride our self in. I want to be able to educate basketball players on making the game as simple and fun as possible.

 

 
Heather Sutherland
JV Basketball Coach
 
I began my career in education in 2008 as Physical Education Teacher and Girls’ Basketball Coach. I transitioned into Personal Training 2 years later due to budget cuts within our company. I resumed teaching in 2014 as a science instructor, then as a social studies instructor. Through my years in education, I have developed multiple curriculums; including, but not limited to,  a "Black Lives Matter" curriculum, an "African American Studies" curriculum, a writing instruction curriculum, and a Health and Wellness curriculum as my most recent assignment as a Health and Wellness instructor. As a basketball coach, I have coached every year that I have been in education. I have coached teams with players that had never played basketball competitively and went on to remain undefeated in their respective leagues. As a basketball player, I played collegiately at Cal State San Bernardino and Los Angeles Trade Tech. I played in a Los Angeles based Semi-pro league briefly before going on to win the Mountain Dew and NBA 3x3 tournament in 2016. In 2017, I competed at the USA Olympic Training Center in Colorado for a chance to play on the USA 3x3 team. I withdrew from teaching full-time in March 2018 to pursue my passion for fitness by creating my corporate wellness company, Empire Training Academy, LLC. As a fitness professional, I develop programs based on individual clients’ needs and desires. Each program is created with the end goal in mind. Clients experience transformations in not only the body, but the mind as well. I look forward to continue driving YULA’s strong sense of values in these young ladies by integrating my 4D coaching philosophy; desire, discipline, dedication, and determination. Let’s go Panthers!!!