The young team looks forward to 2016
By ABE FIELD
There is a rumor that when the women’s volleyball team is playing in Pamplin Sports Center, whoever walks into the gym can feel the intensity which fills the players. This season was no exception. As the Pioneers finish up their season, here’s a look back at some of the season’s highlights.
The Pios recruited a large freshmen class and added eight players to the team this year. This strong recruiting push brought a competitive edge to this year’s team, Coach Stacie Matz-Gordon said. This year’s freshmen, according to Coach Matz-Gordon, are “fantastic students, great people and pretty darn good volleyball players”. One of these freshmen, Julia Sommers, lead the team in kills with 242 on the season.
A Competitive Conference
The Pios were part of an incredibly competitive Northwest Conference this season. Whitworth lead the conference with a 10-2 in-conference record followed by Willamette at 9-3. The team currently holds a record of 6-7 in the conference, but the season is not yet over. The women host Whitman on Friday the 6th and Whitworth on Saturday the 7th for their final games of the season. “I feel proud of what my team has accomplished so far, as we continue to improve year to year, but never completely satisfied,” said Coach Matz-Gordon.
Leadership from Seniors
The Pios say goodbye to three seniors after this season. Their maturity and their performance, Coach Matz-Gordon says, will be greatly missed. Seniors Emily Drake, Ali Carleton, and Isabel Valentine have all left their mark on the program, their coach says, and they have been great leaders for their younger teammates to look up to.
Looking to 2016
Coach Matz-Gordon says that she “couldn’t be more excited about the direction this program is headed. The foundational culture the seniors have instilled, the total buy in from the returners and new players, and the increased competitiveness are all vital to the growth of this program.” The fans sure have a lot to look forward to, because after another strong recruiting effort this season, the Pios have more high level recruits coming in 2016. All of these factors point towards many exciting years to come for the Pios’ volleyball program