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Sacred Heart Girls Ready for Volleyball

New program offers new athletic opportunities.

The+Sacred+Heart+team+after+their+first+match.+
The Sacred Heart team after their first match.

The Sacred Heart team after their first match.

The Sacred Heart team after their first match.

Paige Carroll, Staff Reporter

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As the 2018-2019 school year commences, Sacred Heart High School has officially introduced volleyball to the school community for the first time. Since Sacred Heart is the last Naugatuck Valley League school to participate in volleyball school personnel feared the possibility of low student interest; however, over the span of two months, the team has expanded from three members to twelve members. The team’s experienced coach, Sherri Morgan, has coached volleyball for over twenty years and she has been one of the driving forces for Sacred Heart volleyball. Because most of the team has never played volleyball, Sacred Heart is listed as a Junior Varsity team for its first official season; consequently, the team is hopeful that it may move to the varsity level for the 2019-2020 school year provided that interest increases.

In August, the team began conditioning which spanned from sessions of two people to sessions of eight people. When practice officially began on the twenty-third, Sacred Heart’s team had half the number of the members that it has currently. Provided that most of the team is brand new to the sport, the first week of practice consisted of learning the very basics of passing: stance, bumping, and overhand. Volleyball consists of digs; sets; bumps; and, eventually, kills (hits). Without a decent pass it is difficult to have a continuous volley; therefore, the majority of the first two weeks of practice consisted of critiquing passing techniques and how to control passes. Once most of the team became comfortable with basic play, passing, serving and hitting were incorporated into the daily practice schedule. Jumping up stairs and over hurdles, as well as, sprints assisted by reflex development all helped the team not only improve skills and reflexes. Moreover these challenges catalyzed chemistry and support among the players. Volleyball is a game of communication; therefore, the team has welcomed all of its players posthaste which has led to support, ample high-fives, and friendships.

Although the team has been without a net, the team has adapted and continues to improve skills such as spatial awareness, speed, direction, and flow of the game. The team traveled to Woodland High School after three weeks of official practice to play against the Woodland Freshmen team: for most of the players, it was their first ever volleyball game. The game showed the team how to interact during a volley, and how team communication is essential when fighting for a point. Once the team had set up lines in the gym and began to scrimmage, the team developed skills rapidly and is improving daily. When comparing team skills from one month ago, everyone’s skills have greatly improved; and, as a team, the progress is outstanding. The team now understands how to control and direct passes as well as hit the ball over the net. The Sacred Heart girls’ volleyball team is eager to participate in more matches and improve so that they may move to the varsity level next school year. If the team does have enough interest, the hope is to have both a Junior Varsity team and a Varsity team; therefore, the team welcomes all who are interested to join next school year.

                The SHHS volleyball team prepares for the inaugural season.

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