A Season Like No Other

With the coronavirus in full swing, this team kept their heads up and got closer over as the summer went on

The+team+celebrates+a+great+match+against+Canyon

Tim Tschoepe

The team celebrates a great match against Canyon

Tim Tschoepe, Sports Editor

A bang. 

That’s how every season prior to this has started. However, this season is different. This season will have more challenges, more obstacles and an even bigger reward waiting at the end. 

Last season ended prematurely at the hands of the Steele Knights in a win or go home game to determine the final playoff spot. This fall, however, there is a new form of intensity surrounding the team. A mindset of having some unfinished business if you will. 

“My expectations for the season are really just to take care of business” senior Esther Du’Glas said.

Last year’s team lost several very close matches against the district leaders; therefore, a key focus this year will be closing games. 

“Due to our team’s struggle with closing out matches, it has become a major focus in our practices this year,” Hailey Hays said. “In order to be able to close each game, we must improve on staying focused at the end of each set. Staying mentally tough both on and off the court will be a focus this year.”

Going into the offseason, the team has put an emphasis on mental toughness. The coaches have added a classroom session where players touch on subjects such as being better teammates and the importance of mental health as the season goes on. Being mentally tough should help close out those close matches and add more wins to the win column.

The players have made it clear that working out on their own and getting better by themselves really helped motivate them to be at their best when they were able to get back on the court. Prior to the Coronavirus delaying the start of the season, players trained individually to try to stay in shape. 

“Even though we were not allowed to go to gyms during the initial outbreak and social distancing ordinances, I continued to work out at my home,” Maddie Dennis said. “My days consisted of high intensity workouts I incorporated, along with setting drills on the tennis court.”

The virus has put a halt on a lot of things. A lot of things, that is, except the girls’ work ethic and will to improve. 

“We have always worked really hard in training and practice but this year all the support from all the girls in the program is unreal,” Sarah Hilinsky said. “These girls have pushed me and supported me to do things I didn’t know I was capable of.” 

The Coronavirus has forced the girls to adapt to wearing masks when practicing and playing, but that is what is necessary for them to play the game they love.

“I am super pumped to get to showcase what we’ve been working on,” Jaci Mesa said. 

The level of excitement to be back and playing with each other is shown best at practices where they look like they are having so much fun. 

“I think we’re all just eager to step back on the court for a real match” Naomi Ortiz said.

“I’m super excited heading into the season. Our team this year has become really close” said Sarah Hilinsky. 

It’s cliché for players to say a team is like family, but this team truly is. It is apparent in how committed they are to one another. 

“We’ve really started to come together as a team and we all have the same mindset in how we want this season to go,” Ortiz said.

This year all eyes will be on Ortiz, Mesa and Bekah Williams. According to 

coach Courtney Patton, they will be the key weapons on offense this year. Combined with third-year starter Dennis at the setter position and Du’Glas and Hays at outside hitter, this team is slated for a strong finish. Players like Alexa Pyle, Shaylan Wright and Isabella Kerr off the bench round out a solid rotation. 

This Saturday, the team will scrimmage and welcome the Canyon, Antonian Prep and Hays. The preseason starts on Sept. 15 in Dripping Springs followed by the home opener against Boerne Champion on Sept. 18 at 6:00 p.m.

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email