My team has now participated in three game days, which happen every Tuesday at a different location. On game day our team plays against three other teams (two sets per match), and we have won about half of our matches up until this week. However, this Tuesday my girls won every single match! That’s right. We beat all three teams! I am so impressed by the way they are coming together as a team.
I am starting to see the skill-development drills paying off. I have been focusing each practice on a different skill (bumping, setting, spiking, serving). I have also incorporated hustle drills (to get them to move their feet a little more) and drills to focus on getting three passes before sending the ball back over the net. On Tuesday I saw the girls making three good passes, I saw strong serves by everyone, I saw some beautiful sets and I even saw some of my girls hitting the ball over! We had discussed sticking with a consistent line-up for each set, and that has made a big difference in team cohesion. This has given the girls time to play beside the same teammates and learn to communicate with each other. We still have a ways to go with communicating and working as a team, but it was amazing to witness such incredible progress from the girls!
As a coach I am feeling a little overwhelmed during games, because we play a format called ‘Triple Ball’ that involves tossing the ball over to the other team every 3 points. I am feeling like I really need an assistant coach to help out with the tossing, because it takes away from my ability to coach the girls. I would recommend anyone thinking about getting into coaching middle school volleyball to find an assistant coach to help with logistics and staying organized. Ideally find one at the beginning of the season.
All in all I am loving this opportunity to coach, and I am experiencing the fruits of my labours. It is truly a rewarding experience.
Until next time Marnie xo