Lady Cougars volleyball begins playing this week
The Lassen Community College volleyball team has been practicing hard for the upcoming season. The team plays in its first tournament tomorrow, Wednesday, Aug. 28 in Alameda, Calif. Photo by Maddie Musante
Aug. 27 — The Lassen Community College Lady Cougars volleyball team will play its first tournament tomorrow, Wednesday, Aug. 28 and feels ready to take on its competition.
This year, the team has a new head coach, Amy Williamson, who has been hard at work preparing the team for the upcoming season. Williamson comes to Lassen College from the University of Nevada, Reno, where she was an assistant coach. Williamson has also coached at Tulane University where her squad qualified for the NCAA tournament and her 2010 recruiting class received national recognition.
In the time Williamson has spent working with the Lady Cougars, she has already seen the team grow and improve.
“We had double days all last week, so we got a lot better through the week. We saw a big growth from Monday to Friday and everyone was really excited about the progress that we’re making,” Williamson said during a Lady Cougars volleyball practice Monday, Aug. 19.
The Lady Cougars will be returning three sophomore players to their team. Betsy Guerrero is an outside hitter for the team and, according to Williamson, she will “be scoring a lot of points.”
Jordin Mullins will be returning in the middle position. “We expect pretty good things from her. She’s a really strong kid,” Williamson said of Mullins.
Also returning is Amanda Brenkus, who will complete with freshman Abbi Scheff for the setter position.
The Lady Cougars already have their schedule for the upcoming season and are looking forward to getting out there and sizing up the competition.
“I think for the first year for us everyone will be challenging. Just for us to see other teams and see the level and to be able to compare them … we’re not exactly sure about the level that we’re playing. So we think that we’ll be pretty good. We think we’ll be able to compete with most teams. All the girls are receptive to the coaching, but I don’t know, we’ll see,” Williamson said.
Despite not quite knowing what to expect from the competition, the players do have a big motivator, which is already drawing out their competitive edge. With a team of 16, many of the starting positions were still up for grabs when the team began practicing, meaning the players had to work hard and compete against one another to earn spots on the starting roster. Williamson sees this pressure as something that can only pay off when the Lady Cougars meet their opponents on the court.
“The strong points are just that we have a big team … so they’re going to be competing everyday in practice for positions and really get pushed from each other, so not just from coaches. They’re going to get pushed for their starting roles day in and day out at practice, and I think that’s going to be a big key,” she said.
When asked if she and her assistant coach, Nathan Hallett, have set any goals for the upcoming season, Williamson said, “Nate and I have just set the idea of getting better and being able to compete in every match, you know, and hopefully not going long stretches where we’re losing. We think by the time we get to conference though, we’ll be pretty solid. So we should do well in conference.” However, the team does hope its hard work, constant improvement and competitive play will earn them a spot in the top three in the Golden Valley Conference, Williamson added.