North Stokes volleyball coach, Christine Condon knows a lot of different factors are at play going into the 2016 season, but is hopeful the team’s efforts will be successful.
“We’re rebuilding a lot this year,” she said, noting there’s only one senior on the team that has played all four years.
In total, the volleyball program has 25 players, 5 of which are seniors and 10 freshmen.
“They’re all very strong seniors,” Condon said.
This season will be Condon’s second season as coach, having replaced the previous coach after she moved to Pennsylvania.
Condon said she played softball in high school, however her daughter, who is both a player and student at Montreat College has been instrumental in assisting both the team and her mother.
“You pick it up,” Condon said, adding that being a volleyball mom for many years has prepared her for the role as coach.
Condon said her daughter has specifically helped train the new setters on the team.
“We’ve got a lot of new players, but they’re all very strong and confident,” Condon said.
Two seniors who played on Condon’s team last year are now competing at the college level and doing well, according to the coach.
As for improvements this season, Condon said she wants her players to get accustomed to staying on their feet instead of sliding to get the ball.
There’s currently one junior slated as a setter, and Condon said she made the intentional choice to place the eleventh grader in the position so her skills would roll over into her final year on the team.
“It’s really relieving; I’ve played under a great senior group and I’ve taken what they’ve taught me and put it into this year,” said four-year starter and team captain Chandley Garner.
“Just work hard,” Garner tells younger players. “We have a lot of stepping up to do.”
The team started practices back in June, in addition to a two day volleyball camp with Eli Valentin on Aug. 1 and 2.
Over the course of the season, the team will play 21 matches and two scrimmages, with the first official match on Aug. 22.
Home matches the team will be playing include:
•Aug. 22 against Patrick County
•Aug. 24 against East Wilkes
•Aug. 30 against Bishop
•Sept. 1 against East Surry
•Sept. 6 against Winston-Salem Prep.
•Sept. 7 against West Stokes
•Sept. 14 against Rockingham
•Oct. 4 against Mount Airy
•Oct. 6 against Atkins
•Oct. 11 against Walkertown
Aila Boyd may be reached at 336-415-2210.