Making a varsity sport is never easy regardless of age, but the varsity volleyball team has many talented exceptions. The 2013 Women’s Varsity Volleyball team has a squad made up of unique and skilled players. Most of the roster are upperclassmen, with the exception of three sophomores, Ashlynn Fresques (’16), Kate Jones (’16), and Elizabeth […]
Making a varsity sport is never easy regardless of age, but the varsity volleyball team has many talented exceptions.
The 2013 Women’s Varsity Volleyball team has a squad made up of unique and skilled players. Most of the roster are upperclassmen, with the exception of three sophomores, Ashlynn Fresques (’16), Kate Jones (’16), and Elizabeth Robinson (’16), and two freshmen, Paloma Bowman (’17) and Ryann Thomison (’17).
“It’s usually not my criteria to pull up freshmen for experience.” Coach Diane Heine explains. “I’ve brought up maybe five freshmen in the past five or six years. They definitely need to be well qualified, skilled, and meet the same expectations of the upperclassmen.”
When looking at skill level, players were chosen solely based on their ability and what they can bring to the team.
With the freshmen, age is not taken into account when looking to put together a squad. They are expected to meet the same skills and criteria as any upperclassmen on the team.
“I think that it’s not a matter of ability, it’s a matter of being able to communicate and play at a higher level against older girls, and I think these freshmen have stepped up to the level.” Nastassja Bowman (’15) says. “They give excitement, they’re own unique skills, they’re able to communicate and can contribute to the team.”
All of the juniors and seniors on the team are considered as role models for the younger players. They are looked up to and used as examples by these underclassmen.
Being a freshman on varsity is quite rare and exceptional, but can be an intimidating experience. But the younger girls have been welcomed with open arms.
“The whole team is very welcoming and supportive,” says Paloma. “Therefore, it was an easy transition to playing with older girls. But while I’m playing, I don’t necessarily think about my age because I feel as if our team is one big unit — not individuals.”
Playing any sport requires bringing the player’s best efforts to the table, regardless of age. The coaches not only look for who meets the skill level, but who will fit best with the team and make them successful.
Freshmen are no different from the sophomores, juniors and seniors. They have to fight for their playing time just as any other player would.
“The playing time is based off of the coaches decisions, who they think has worked hardest in practice, and who brings out the best in the team,” Paloma says. “I think the amount of playing time I get is fair because everyone earns their playing time through great effort and executing the skills they have.”
Every player on the varsity volleyball team rightfully earned their position and playing time, proving that age is nothing but a number when it comes to sports.