Beach Volleyball

Alissa

Alissa

Alissa Benedetti, Sports Reporter

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Alissa
For the few who don’t know, a new sport has been added to the spring sport line up: Sand Volleyball. How did we get this program? For years the sand courts outside were just used for power training, but now they can finally fulfill their purpose! “The sand courts were built about 30 years by a Chemistry teacher (forgot his name) who ran tournaments with students during lunch time,” said Head Coach, Kathryn Coleman, “After he left they weren’t used very often (football / power training trains in the sand sometimes).” Starting a new program from scratch is never easy, especially without a budget, but Coach Coleman, along with help from her assistant coach, Asha Hart, and our Athletic Director, Scott Warner, were able to get the program up and running. “We found out 2 weeks before tryouts that we were approved to start and had 22 girls tryout.”

We weren’t the first school in our district to jump on the chance to get a new program started, “This is OC’s 2nd year and Ridge, BC and DV are starting the program this year.  It has been an AIA sport in AZ for 5 years and started off with 8 schools,” said Coach Coleman “This year there are 43 schools that are participating.  We are fortunate at DV to have our very own sand courts!  The other schools have to rent out Victory Lanes or parks to use.” For that, let’s thank the unknown chemistry teacher for finding the funding, and most importantly the sand, to build our own Sand Volleyball courts.

The sport does differentiate from the classic indoor volleyball we all know and love, but that doesn’t make it any less fun. Coach Coleman has had plenty of experience coaching, starting at Highland Lakes, then moving on to coaching here as the Freshman and JV level, and even coaching club teams, accumulating a total of 11 years coaching volleyball. But she’s definitely not afraid to ask for help, “I am comfortable coaching volleyball but there are some pretty major differences going from indoors to beach.  So, I have been studying rulebooks, researching drills on-line and have been getting a lot of help from other coaches,” communication is key in building a successful program, so she made sure to stay in touch with coaches at Mountain Ridge and O’Conner. “It’s called Beach Volleyball because it’s 2 on 2 games (think Olympics) vs. Sand Volleyball which is 6 on 6. So, the training is different and playing in sand is more difficult,” she stated. “We have 12 players on the Varsity team (no JV – only Varsity) and 10 will play in a games. It’s similar to tennis as the players will be ranked each week.  We need to win 3/5 matches to win the game,” even with all the differences, the coach is proud to say that they had a successful season.  “The beach players are very talented and have transferred their knowledge of the sport to the sand seamlessly!”

Not all transitions are easy, but with the help of the people around her, the transition was successful and even lead to a successful season. Be sure to stop by next year to watch our girls in action!

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