South Stokes Lady Sauras invited young athletes from fifth to eighth grade to learn more about volleyball in a four-day camp teaching basic fundamentals to more advanced skills.
“Most of them are going into Southeastern’s program. We have a couple from Chestnut Grove here and a few that are already on Southeastern’s team. All of our incoming freshmen helped with coaching,” explained Ashley Hicks who is overseeing South’s program until a head coach is announced. “We’re hoping to make it fun and see them take the general fundamentals they’ve learned and use them in their school or club ball.”
Hicks divided the girls into three stations. The top group focused on specific drills while the other two emphasized basic skills.
“It’s amazing to see how they come in at the beginning of the week slapping at balls but by the end they’ve learned how to pass and how to set. They may not do it perfectly, but they at least have the form.”
As the Lady Sauras assistant volleyball coach Hicks has been part of the camp for two years. She also coaches in the Champion Volleyball Club.
“I love being a part of both programs. I’ve been able to see girls come to camp, and then see them try out for their school program and make a great teammate. The same goes for club volleyball. It’s exciting to see growth beginning at such a young age,” she said.
The coach utilizes her varsity players as coaches and uses encouragement to keep the girls wanting to learn more.
At the end of each camp day, the athletes huddle together and tell the person on their right what they did well.
“Then the coaches say what they’d like to have them work on for the next day,” she said. “This is a great program. You come in and it feels like a close, tight-knit family. Our team is made up of extremely good girls that know how to play and also show the younger girls what to do.”
While South Stokes is still without a coach since Doug Balser stepped down two weeks ago, Hicks is running the program smoothly.
“We’re still going to camp at Catawba the third week in July and we’ll have workouts set during the week.”
Amanda Dodson can be reached at 336-813-2426 or on Twitter at AmandaTDodson.