Skip Navigation

KSC's Pokryfki Gives Hometown View of VP Candidate Palin

KEENE, N.H. 9/5/08 - Jordan Pokryfki didn’t have an opportunity to tune into the Republican National Convention last Wednesday to learn about Sarah Palin, Alaska’s governor and John McCain’s choice as a running mate. A junior setter on the Keene State volleyball team, Pokryfki was busy helping her teammates roll to a 3-0 win over Southern New Hampshire University at Spaulding Gym.

Pokryfki was already quite familiar with the vice-presidential candidate. Poryfki hails from Wasilla, Alaska, the city Palin served as a city councilor and mayor before her election as the state’s governor.

Poryfki, who comes from a big hockey family, says she frequently saw Palin at the Wasilla hockey rink. “It wasn’t a big deal. Everybody was there, “she said. “Her oldest son is a year younger than me and attended a rival high school. She would go to watch him play, and I would go to support my high school. She was definitely a hockey mom.”

Poryfki loves calling Alaska home. “There is nowhere else I’d rather have grown up,” she said. “Being from Alaska has really given me a great appreciation for the outdoors. Our family is real outdoorsy, so I grew up fishing, camping, and hiking. Everywhere you looked it was gorgeous.” In high school, Pokryfki first turned down the recruiting overtures of KSC volleyball coach Bob Weiner. Then she had a change of heart. “After I thought about it, I said why not? I’d never been to the East Coast before.”

Developing into one of the conference’s top setters, Pokryfki earned first- team All-Little East honors last season, leading the Owls to their first regular season championship. The goal this fall is to win a first-ever LEC tournament title and an NCAA berth.

Pokryfki returns home twice a year, during the Christmas break and summer. She joins her dad Vince, who works on the pipeline for British Petroleum (BP), on the North Slope of Alaska during the summer. “It’s completely flat tundra,” said Pokryfki, who works an exhausting schedule cleaning up the facilities. Her mom, Sammye, a social worker, and her dad have made a few trips to Keene to see their daughter play at KSC. Pokryfki hopes they can come for the LEC tournament this fall.

Pokryfki, who refers to herself as an independent, said of Palin, “Just because she’s from my hometown doesn’t mean I’m going to vote for her. I’m going to do my homework and find out what she’s for and what she wants to do.” A member of the LEC All-Academic team and a biology major, Pokryfki knows all about homework and balancing her busy athletic and academic schedule. “I’ll just add politics to my list of subjects this fall,” she said.

Palin’s nomination has helped the KSC student in one way. “I used to tell people I live 45 minutes north of Anchorage. Now everyone’s heard of Wasilla,” Pokryfki said.

Related Stories

Contact Keene State College

229 Main Street
Keene, New Hampshire 03435