By Tiffany L. Rehbein
This will be a season to look forward to, said new head volleyball coach Lisa Handley about her Skylight team.
The Skylights begin three-a-day practices on Monday that will continue for three weeks. Those practices will focus on, among other things, weight programs, different types of conditioning and team cohesion. And the girls this season have their goals set high.
If you set high standards then you will tend to meet those goals, Handley said. I want to be the surprise of the season.
To be that surprise, the Skylights must focus on improving a 5-17 record from last year. They must also focus on their new coach, the fourth in five years.
Handley said that stability would be the greatest asset she would bring to Northerns volleyball program.
Stability plus a 6-foot-2-inch middle hitter who has given a verbal commitment to play, plus three senior leaders and two strong setters who all might prove to be great assets to the program.
After adding those ingredients together, the Skylights could easily compete, Handley said.
Those other teams are going to hate playing against us, Handley said. I want to pass balls like nails. We need to be a defensive threat.
Handley cited athletic abilities, great setters in sophomores Gabby and Hessa, more commonly known as Gabrielle Chamblis and Jessica Gevenz, powerful arm swings and height as team strengths this season.
The lack of strong middle hitters last season has been remedied in tall recruits this year.
Last season, they were missing trained middle hitters, Handley said. People were playing positions they had never played before.
Handley hopes to run at least three people per position this fall.
Our theme this year is Heart and Soul Volleyball, Handley said. Were going to give it everything weve got. Were going to know when we walk off the court, we gave it our all.
The Skylights open the season on August 28, at Dillon, where they will get a sneak peak at all Frontier Conference teams.