2013-11-16 / The Bullhorn

Middle school volleyball players look forward to moving up to big leagues

By Hannah Lunsford

The Roxboro Community School (RCS) middle school varsity 2013 volleyball season has come to a successful close, and the rising ninth-grade players are more than excited to be moving up to the next level.

The middle school Bulldogs, Hannah Hawkins, Camryn Black, Mackenzie Thornburg, Alexis Bowen, Jordan Taylor, Jenna Clayton and Lana Kendrick, all agreed that they have high expectations for next year’s season and the commitment, expectations and encouragement from their coach has made them grow as a team and as individual players.

Hawkins, somewhat nervous about next year’s season, said she thinks the older girls will be good role models.

“The team has grown a lot closer this season,” said Hawkins. “Since sixth-grade, my teammates have supported me and we have all become practically sisters.”

Black said that her last middle school season was filled with fun, yet hard working practices.

“My teammates have supported me tremendously. When I would mess up or lose confidence, they were right there to help put a smile back on my face. Coach Micholene (Schumacher) has supported me in so many ways,” said Black. “She took time away from her family to spend basically eight hours or more every week with us. I want to thank her for that.”

Thornburg, whose older sibling Peyton is on the high school varsity volleyball team, said she has high hopes for next year’s season and she can’t wait to play with her sister.

She added, “I really think that we’ll have a great season. Coach Micholene has supported me so much this year by always telling me how to be a better player. She would tell me what I needed to focus on for the game, such as being loud and firing my teammates up.”

Bowen commented, “My teammates are not just my teammates, but also my sisters. Even though volleyball is over this year, we are still a family. My coach is amazing and she has been like a second mom to me. She always reminded us that school always comes first and when you work hard you do in fact play harder,” Bowen said.

Jordan said she felt that being one of the older girls on the team made her more aware of what she said and did.

“I learned to think twice about what I said and would ask myself if this would be something that is going to help” the team, said Jordan. She continued, “My teammates have been extremely encouraging and so much fun to be with. My coach has made me realize my full potential, uplifted me, and congratulated me whenever I listened or did something well. The advice that she gave always helped.”

Clayton said she thinks she and her teammates will do well next year considering they have played together for a while.

“It was very exciting being a role model for the younger players. It was fun seeing that if we put excitement and encouragement into everything we did, in games or in practices, the younger players followed our lead,” she said.

Kendrick said, “My last year of middle school volleyball went great. My teammates gave me the best support and it really felt like a privilege to have the younger girls on the team look up to me. Coach Micholene helped me improve so much.”

The Bulldogs ended their season with an undefeated record of 17-0.

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