Updated: Feb 13
Wow.This.Team. So, it started with a snowy drive Sunday morning to UW Parkside to play in our first 10s tournament, February Fun. Our first match of the morning was against a tough Burlington Elite team and we came out a little sluggish and lost in two sets. We started to come alive in our second match and dominated - 25-8, 25-14 and it only got better from there.
These girls really stepped it up and brought the energy – we won our next two matches which brought us to the championship for GOLD - against that same Burlington Elite team that beat us that morning. We won the first set, 25-17 and were behind in set two but came roaring back, thanks to some great serving runs, to take the gold.
Getting our first match wins AND taking GOLD was super exciting for the team! The way they supported each other and never gave up is a testament to how hard they work at each practice. Whether they are playing, working or hanging between games, these girls are doing it right and I am so proud of them. We also have the best game-changers cheering section keeping the energy high.
#ShoutOut to the parents for making the drive and to the girls for playing late into the day. We were the last team there!
Exciting tournament for us! The 11's have been settling into a little bit of a regular rotation. =) Players are starting to gel and trust one another. Deciphering "who's ball is it" is becoming way easier for them. They are showing me they care, they understand and they want to do their best. Team spirit is alive and well with new cheers and support from our bench. I love watching the team rally together as "Avacado's". Be careful what you ask for as a coach! Ha, ha..........squeaky avocado's rock!! Team parents are also showing their love and support as well, traveling out in the unknown Wisconsin winter weather and buying our team ribbons for every tournament! Thanks parents for being there and being part of the team!! Congrats to our team for taking 3rd in a 12's tournament! It was great to have our team face off our 12's I Am team and to cheer on the 12's for their well deserved 1st place WIN!!
While it was cold and snowy outside, the girls brought the heat inside. The coaches have really challenged the girls over the last several practices with the intention of hoping some of those points of emphasis appear during competition. The girls certainly met our expectations. One of the team's philosophies moving forward is "no free balls given." Emy, Paige, Rhylee, and Morgan V. did a great job driving balls over on broken plays instead of simply just passing it over allowing an opponent to stay in system on offense. Several times, they resulted in some pretty impressive kills. We've also worked on liberos (Hannah and Emy) taking the 2nd ball if setter takes first, this led to 3 kills on back row attacks. Our net play improved on 50/50 balls, most noticeably by Emily and Millie being decisive in that area, resulting in a number of kills.
This week was also our first attempt at spot serving and the girls really went after some of those targets, this includes Paige introducing the jump serve. Our setting has also continued to improve in the trusting hands of Morgan and Sam. They now have the ability to effectively deliver 4 different sets to our hitters. Our middles, Olivia and Nora, continue to get more comfortable with their roles on offense and defense and are consistently able to put pressure on the defense. They both had some moments of spectacular play. We finished the day with some very nice serve receive and defensive plays. Hannah, Paige, Emily, Morgan V. , Millie, Emy, and Rhylee, performed very well in these areas and really limited our opponents abilities to go on serving runs or to score points on tips and mishits.
Lastly, Paige had an outstanding day attacking the ball. We've been waiting for her to really let lose on the outside and several of her attacks exhibited just that. At one point, her sister Abby was clearly left impressed (jaw-dropped) as Paige pounded a kill cross court: The entire gym was impressed. All of this great play led us to a convincing tournament win, our first of the season after 2 2nd place finishes!
The 16's headed to Green Bay and played in a 17's tournament. We had some good matches and some good laughs during the day. The tournament had to get get cut short because of time restraints but they finished on a win, taking 2nd in their pool and winning our crossover match. Overall we finished 3-1 for the day and took 3rd!
#ShoutOut to Abby Proefrock for coming out of hitting retirement to play outside in our final match! This girl can jump out of the gym!