MC Volleyball Season Preview


With the 2018 season opener on the near horizon,
Head Coach Tori Kenno’s MC Raptor’s Volleyball team has been hard at work with preseason
workouts. And so far, the coach likes what she sees. Everything is going really well; everybody’s
been here on time; everybody’s hustling; balls aren’t hitting the floor; everyone’s engaged
and I think ready for the season to start. Last season the Raptors lost in the first
round of the NJCAA Region XX tournament, so Coach Kenno hit the recruiting trail early,
determined to avoid another early post season exit. Yeah, we kind of started right after the season
ended last year, we went to a couple of the state finals games, that’s where we saw Chanel,
we saw her play with Eleanor Roosevelt, she also played club for me, so I got to see a
lot of her, but we started pretty much right when the season ended, we went and watched
some of club and then got talking early and locked them in. She added 12 new players, and In addition,
Kenno also welcomed back a solid core from last year’s squad
Right now I have four returning players, Linel and Seraphina are back, they’re two hitters,
they’ve been in the weight room, they’ve really worked hard in the off-season, they’ve improved
a lot from last year. And then I also have Ecaterina and Virginia
from last year and their passing has improved a ton, there’s been balls that I thought for
sure would hit the floor and they’re just popping them right up, they’re serving is
a lot better. So the returning players definitely stepped
up their game and the new recruits are fitting right into that level and everything seems
to be going well. And even though it’s early and not a match
has been played, Coach Kenno is happy with her new additions
I’m feeling really good about the new recruits, they seem to be fitting in nicely, they get
along with the returning players and everybody seems to be jelling really nicely. And everyone is tall and can hit the ball
hard and I’m really excited. Linel Perez, one of the team’s key returning
front line players is also excited about her new teammates
Oh, so far it’s going pretty well, we have a lot of new recruits and they all play really
well, we just have to get used to each other, but it’s good. But having a host of new players also presents
a challenge; volleyball is a game that relies and thrives on chemistry and familiarity,
so how does Coach Kenno foster that? I think just having open gyms, and having
them come, be in the gym, just kind of playing together, getting to know each other, I know
the girls put together a group chat and they’re all texting and talking and doing their thing,
they’ve gone out to eat a couple of times after practice. So I think just being together and hanging
out is kind of helping them jell. And a lot of them know each other from high
school, like they didn’t play together but they played against each other and… And Perez also gives a thumbs up on how the
new players are meshing with the returners. We spend so much time together every single
day so it’s like, we are constantly adjusting and constantly re-doing things, so within
a day or two we’re kind of used to how someone sets or how someone serves, it’s just a matter
of keeping that consistency. IO definitely think that there’s a lot of
talent and they can pretty play anywhere on the court, which gives us a good variety for
the season, we can switch it up a lot and kind of, we have that edge over other teams. And like all MC teams this season, volleyball
is also moving up in division, from D3 to D2, but Kenno seems confident her team can
handle the challenge, I think this team will be able to handle it
very well, we play most of the same teams anyway, it’s just the Regionals that will
be different, so I don’t think it’s going to be that much different than last year,
just the Region will probably be a little tougher. But I really think this team steps up my expectations
and everything and I think we’ll do fine. And with the season ready to begin, both Lopez
and Coach Kenno are looking forward to a big 2018. I’m really excited, I definitely expect a
lot more wins, I definitely think we’ll go a lot further in the post season, so I think
it should be good, so stay tuned because it’s going to be great. I’m very excited, I’m really eager to see
them play a match and see how it all goes. But I have really high expectations and I
think they’re going to do really well. For the Raptor Report, I’m Michael Brown
.

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