Experience should benefit Centre volleyball
The Centre volleyball team is small, with 10 players, including two newcomers, but they’ve been practicing all summer to improve their skills.
The team has played in tournaments at Hesston, Manhattan, and Hillsboro, often against bigger schools.
Coach Karen Nickel said the experience of the starters should help Centre improve last year’s record of 6-24.
Senior Emma David and sophomore Carlye Deines are strong left-front hitters, and senior Gracie Luna is a right-front hitter.
“Carlye really grew last year, not only in her play, but in her attitude,” Nickel said. “She is a well-rounded player.”
Junior Alyssa Espinoza is a setter, middle-hitter, and blocker.
“She reads the ball well and really hustles,” Nickel said. “So does her sister, Samantha.”
Samantha, Alyssa’s twin, is a utility player who can play anywhere but is also a good server receiver, Nickel said.
The sixth position is “up for grabs.”
Nickel said it most likely would be Kaitlyn Hudson, along with Lexis Brewer.
“Kaitlyn has the power to be a right-front hitter,” she said.
The other players are sophomore Alex Remmers and freshmen Brooklyn Smith and Lili Espinoza.
Senior Alli Hurd will return, not as a player, but as a manager.
The tallest player on the team is 5 feet, nine inches.
“We don’t have much height, but we have girls that can jump,” Nickel said. “Don’t count us out. We are small but mighty. Learning how to work as a team and finish our matches is a huge goal for us.”
Nickel is in her third year as head volleyball coach. She also coaches junior high. She was an assistant for seven years. Jennifer Espinoza is her assistant.
The team will open the season Tuesday at Canton-Galva.
Last modified Aug. 29, 2019