Setting Success: Volleyball 2012

Danya Issawi

Horrified, junior Audrey Hitchcock watched as yet another ball whizzed by her head. This was the third ball she had missed that game. Discouraged, she looked down at the wooden floor beneath her feet and shook her head in dismay. Hitchcock then felt a reassuring pat on her back and listened as senior Hayley Hansford gave her a pep talk. The few words that Hansford said to Hitchcock turned her performance around and led the East volleyball team to yet another victory.

“Volleyball is a game of momentum,” Hitchcock said. “Once you mess up, it’s really hard to gain your momentum back and get your head back into the game. I was just having a really off game, but Hayley came up to me and gave me the best pep talk and it totally turned my game around.

As one of the captains, Hansford felt it was her job to lift Hitchcock’s spirits.

“As captain I guess I’m like the quarterback,” Hansford said. “l try to be as positive as I can be, and I try to be that person on the court that people can look to when we’re down and just know we can make a comeback.

This year, there were seven seniors on the varsity volleyball team, and each of them offered something different to the team. Some were dependable, some provided the energy that was vital to the game, and others provided humor. Together these seven seniors provided leadership for the rest of the team.

“The seniors are our best players and our leaders,” Hitchcock said. “It’s their last year to be a part of the team, so we all want to work really hard for them so they can have a great last season.”

Although everyone wanted the season to be successful, no one was sure how well the team would do. The team had lost several key players, which left gaps in the lineup.

“Going into the season I didn’t expect to dominate the way we did all season,” sophomore Katie Knight said. “We had lost so many people and I just didn’t know how the season would go, but we worked hard and ended up being first in the Sunflower League. It’s a huge accomplishment and I’m really glad that the seniors got to be a part of it.”

Doing as well as the team did throughout the season not only took dedication, leadership, and hard work, it also took chemistry among the girls.

“We all have each others’ backs,” Hansford said. “We need everyone at their best so we’re always there for each other cheering them up and making everyone feel important.”

The love the girls had for each other, the hard work and the overwhelming leadership on the team contributed to the varsity team coming out on top and ultimately winning the Sunflower League.