by Coach Soo and Coach Amin
After more than a year without school athletics due to COVID-19, it was clear that many of our students really wanted to get back on the court. This season, more players arrived for the first week of practices than ever before. Nineteen students from across all four upper school grades arrived on the volleyball court extremely eager to play, learn, and socialize with their peers.
From the beginning, we could tell that these players were a special group. During the first week of practices, we asked them to do more exercise and strength training than they had ever done during past seasons. We asked them to serve overhand, complete passing, setting, hitting, and blocking drills. We asked them to learn—or relearn—rules, rotations, and positions. Not once did they complain about having to do any of the drills or what we asked of them. In fact, they usually responded with determination and a willingness to learn. Our six veterans returning veterans—Charlotte, Sofia, Leanne, Olivia, Laura, and Abby—often demonstrated drills or modeled skills to the new players. Our captains—Charlotte, Sofia, and Leanne—demonstrated leadership and helped combine nineteen individuals into one team.
We had a number of new players who demonstrated perseverance and a great attitude. New 11th graders included Roxie, Klara, and May. New 10th graders included Stephanie and Sky. New 9th graders included Ameena, Lola, Nkechi, and Violet. Each one of these players put in so much time and effort to become the best player they could in the short amount of time that we had. The progress from the beginning of the season till the end showed tremendous growth as they became more confident in their abilities and skills.
Also new to our team were Beck, Noble, and Andrew, who began practicing in the spring season. During games, they became our team managers and supported the team in multiple ways. They supported the referee by doing lines and calling balls in or out. They learned to keep score and take stats for all players. They carried the first-aid gear and game equipment. However, the most important support of all was displaying a positive attitude and cheering on everyone before the start of the game and during the game.
Over the season, these players have developed new friendships and bonded as a team. With the development of common language and a curriculum, every player became aware of how they can be a positive leader and a supportive member of the team. They worked hard on their skills, improved in all facets of the game, and became a true team. Congratulations to all of the players on a great season! And special congratulations to Sofia, Stella, and Charlotte on their final season with MMFS volleyball. Go Lightning!!
Click here to view photos from the 2021 Varsity Volleyball Season.