Volleyball prepares for season despite cancellation

Nathanial Barbee and Christian Rigg

Everyone knew that the upcoming sports season would not be the same as it has been in years past. 

Last semester, spring sports were canceled following the campus-wide shutdown, and conditions this semester remain much the same, with the majority of fall sports getting canceled as well. 

Volleyball Head Coach Randi Raff says that her squad began communicating remotely as soon as they were sent home in March and that she’s proud of the way they stayed connected during the quarantine. 

“They were upset at first, but one of the things that we try to train in our athletes and encourage in our athletes is the attitude of resilience,” said Raff.

Raff hosted daily Zoom meetings for her team along with the weekly captain and emerging leader meetings. The coach also tasked players with weekly assignments in order to maintain their physical and mental health; watching films and drawing up plays has helped keep Raff and her team focused on the upcoming season. 

“We’re staying on track with some of the things that could be pushed to the back burner,” said Raff. 

It’d be hard for any team to keep their spirits up when they’re unable to do what they love,  but the volleyball team continued working hard and tried to look forward to next season instead of dwelling on the one they’d missed out on. 

In order to keep players safe, the NCAA Division II initially decided to postpone all fall athletics. However, there have been discussions from the athletic department that a potential GLVC schedule is currently in the works. 

Raff says she hopes the season could begin as early as Feb. along with a conference tournament later in the spring. 

The GLVC has not yet stated when the new season is to start, but Raff is staying positive and keeping her team on their toes.

“We lift weights and play volleyball,” said Raff, but made it clear that the team is maintaining social distancing during practice. 

“They are sticking to their regular training and we are encouraging good decision making,” said Raff. 

 No matter the outcome, it’s safe to say that the volleyball team is ready for anything.