“The season is going well,” says Stephanie Irwin, head coach of the Lady Mustangs volleyball team. “I’m excited we are in conference play. We had some tough matches in pre-season, but I’m glad to see our hard work paying off.”
So far, the volleyball team has played 15 matches, winning six of them. Irwin said her goal is to have the team make the conference tournament this season.
“Our last match against Crowley’s Ridge was too close for comfort,” Irwin says.
The team won the match 3-1, but each game was close by a margin of less than four points.
“I’m glad we finished with a win, but there are some things we definitely need to improve on,” says Irwin.
Irwin says the team will be facing several tough competitors this season, such as Park, William Woods, Columbia and Missouri Baptist.
“Those teams have always been competitive, but the girls are ready for these match-ups,” says Irwin.
Irwin says she hopes to improve the team by keeping their eyes on the goal of conference. The team has already improved their record of wins, doubling their wins since their last season.
“I have four freshmen and two sophomores that came to CBC this year, and they all see court time,” Irwin says. “I’m proud of them and I’m also proud of the girls that are returners as well.”
Contributing to the team’s success, senior Kelsy Knox says the team has made an effort to come together as a group.
“I would have to say this year’s team chemistry has been better than the past,” says Knox. “We seem to mesh really well and encourage each other on the court better this year and we are building our confidence up.”
Knox is one of two seniors on the team. Her goal, she says, is to finish the season knowing that she has helped make the program better and invested in the lives of her younger team members.
The team’s other senior, Hope Johnson, says that volleyball is more than just individuals playing a game.
“Teamwork means a lot to me, so for me to be a part of the volleyball team is really special,” says Johnson. “We have to communicate constantly. It takes all of us to win a point.”
Photo by Marcela Beuno