Woodridge girls volleyball team focusing on consistency
PENINSULA — Woodridge High School girls volleyball head coach Jenna Steyer said consistency has been a major focus for her team this season.
“We have a very young, inexperienced team this year. We have a lot of potential, and I feel we have all the right pieces. We simply need to find a way to be more consistent in our play,” the coach stated. “We still need to improve our serve receive by becoming more consistent in getting first ball side outs. We also need to work on reading the court to find the holes in the defense when we are attacking. With young athletes, it is always important to improve their mental toughness.”
On the plus side, Steyer said, the players are all willing to put in the work necessary to improve.
“The girls are always ready to work hard in practice and have good attitudes,” she said. “We have strong hitters and a back court that is always hustling.”
The lone senior on this year’s team is Marissa Mally.
“She is a great kid,” Steyer said. “She is a quiet player, but leads through her actions.”
The team’s co-captains are juniors Lindsie Thursby and Emily Kasper.
“Both are in their third year on varsity,” the coach said. “Lindsie is our most consistent leader in kills and averages 6.5 kills per match. She also is one of our top servers with her tough jump serve. Emily is one of our setters. She is averaging 13 assists per match. She brings great energy to the court and is very vocal. She is another player who lays her body on the line every night. She is a hustle player.”
The team’s libero is sophomore Breanna Riebau.
“She has done a terrific job taking control of the back row for us. She does a great job on serve receive and isn’t afraid to hit the floor,” Steyer said. “She continues to improve each game, and I am looking for big things from her in the future.”
In addition, the coach noted, a number of other players have been in key roles for the team this season.
“Carolyn Anderson continues to improve her game at the net. She has begun to get a lot more touches and blocks on the ball, which really helps our back row on defense. Liza Imobersteg and Carolyn are very smart players. They continue to read the defense and find the holes. Both do a nice job adjusting and have a commanding presence at the net,” Steyer said. “Stephanie Aceto, Whitney Arnett, Jessica Beattie, Jenna Dougherty, Maria Reid and Courtney Montecalvo are heavy contributors to the team and continue to improve as they gain more experience.
As of Sept. 30, the team’s overall record was 4-11. Last season, the team finished 6-16 overall and 4-10 in the Portage Trail Conference.
“We have lost six straight and need to find a way to get back on track,” Steyer said. “Our goal is to end the season with eight wins, which is more wins than last year.”
This is Steyer’s first year as the team’s head coach.
“I have been the [junior varsity (JV)] coach at Woodridge for the past two years,” she said. “The assistant coach/JV coach is Melinda Hosford. She is a great addition to the program.”
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