It’s a matter of getting involved for Marka

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 12, 2002

Instead of cheering his children on by the sidelines, Paul Marka has opted to volunteer his time as a coach, even when he wasn’t familiar with the sport.

This summer Albert Lea’s U-16 Girls Soccer team, coached by Marka, won a state championship. His daughter, Amy, has played on the team from early on and Marka has been on the coaching team since the girls played in U-8.

&uot;It’s a good way to get to know you child’s friends and their families,&uot; said Marka. &uot;Plus, I was going to be there anyway.&uot;

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Marka never played competitive soccer and has worked hard picking up knowledge from outside resources. He said he learned a lot from the other coaches in the area and from the soccer clinics put on by players from Europe a few years ago in Albert Lea. Besides additional soccer duties as junior varsity girls’ coach for Albert Lea, Marka coaches youth hockey and previously coached traveling girls’ basketball.

Originally from Mankato, Marka moved to the area 20 years ago. He works at Progress Casting and has a wife, DeEtta, stepson, Josh, daughter, Amy, and son, Kasey.

&uot;We have so much fun,&uot; said Marka.