The SMCM volleyball team is looking to be a competitive presence on the court for their 2014 season. Led by captain Autumn Fisher, the team consists of two firstyears, three sophomores, seven juniors, and one senior. Their current record stands at four wins and four losses, with two 3-0 wins at the Puerto Rico Classico standing out as a season highlight. “It was an amazing, eye opening experience that taught us how different teams play,” said sophomore Mimi Graf.
Despite the challenging opponents in the conference, new coach Jeremy Sands is optimistic about upcoming games. “The Capital Athletic Conference is tough and you need to face top competition to prepare for the battles ahead of us,” he stated. “I am confident that our team will emerge as one of the strongest teams to date. I look forward to being a part of the journey.” The team feels confident that Sands is preparing them well for the rest of the season. “I think he’s done a really good job with telling us what he wants and setting up practices to try to get the most work done in the short amount of time that we have,” said junior Karlee Valliant. “He came in very organized and set a good base for how the rest of the season should go.”
This year’s team is intent on playing up their strengths while simultaneously improving weaker areas. “We want to work on our mental toughness,” said junior Autumn Fisher, who went on to say: “that being said, our current strengths are plentiful: we can run a great offense, and our communication is strong.” The players feel that being a close-knit group is an advantage to the team both on and off the court.
After some tough matches against Franklin & Marshall College and host Stevenson University on Sept 13, the Seahawks are hoping to break their current streak of two losses on September 20 with games against Bridgewater College and host Washington & Lee University. On Sept 26 and 27, they will be participating in the 21st Annual Lycoming College Warrior Tip Off Classic, followed by their first conference game against Southern Virginia University on Oct 1.
The team is also busy preparing for other events this season. “I’m looking forward to community outreach and the Dig the Pink game to support the fight against breast cancer,” said junior Jenny Staab. They will also be playing an alumni game at Hawktoberfest. “It’s going to be so much fun to get together with the women we have played with, and the ones we’ve never met, to hear about their experiences and get them involved in SMCM events in the future,” said junior Mandy Goodspeed. Overall, the team expressed very positive feelings about the rest of the season. “All in all, I look forward to every game,” said Fisher. “Being a collegiate athlete is an awesome privilege.”