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The student news site of Inglemoor High School

Nordic News

The student news site of Inglemoor High School

Nordic News

Volleyball prepares to serve a comeback

Iris Huang (she/her)
The team circles around their assistant coach for instructions during practice.

21This year, volleyball’s ratio of underclassmen to upperclassmen is unprecedented. There are 17 freshmen and 34 total players in the program. In addition, almost half of the varsity team are freshmen: there are five freshmen and 12 total players on varsity.

“We have a very big freshman class, which is great, but it wasn’t my goal just to take freshmen,” volleyball coach Alex Nottingham (he/him) said. “But I’m definitely excited for the future because these freshmen have made varsity, and all five of them are in the rotation to play each night. They get lots of experience, which is kind of cool.”

Freshman Emily Peng (she/her) didn’t expect to make varsity her first year of high school. Coming from middle school, the competitiveness of the sport was definitely a surprise. 

“I feel like it’s a good challenge for me to rise up to and continue in my later years of high school,” Peng said.

With only three returning varsity players, the season has been off to a rough start. They’ve lost all ten of their games, and the score has been 0-3 in most of their games, including one against North Creek.

“We just played North Creek the other night, and they have four D1 commits. So it’s opening their eyes to the game of volleyball that they’ve never even seen before,” Nottingham said. “We just got to work one game at a time and build a chemistry between the defensive players and work the defense and offense.”

Although the team has more freshmen than others, Nottingham makes the most out of every practice. Practices are divided into one hour in the weight room, one hour studying gameplay from their recent games, and two and a half hours practicing endurance, technique and different plays in the gym. 

“I think this year, [our coach] is focusing a lot more on games,” junior and varsity player Yemi Oladosu (she/her) said. “He’s focusing on gameplay a lot, but there is also a touch of cardio, like if we have to play long durations.”

Even though their cardio workouts have been physically demanding, they aren’t getting tired as quickly as other teams. Additionally, Nottingham said his strategy is to be the most prepared team on the court in terms of cardio and skill.

“Because volleyball is such a team sport, if you already have connections with people, it’s easier to play and the dynamic is easier to form,” Oladosu said. “A lot of the teams that we play against, some of them are majority seniors that have probably played with each other the past four years, and they probably already have that connection.”

However, the team is already working toward building that connection with the little traditions they do every game.

“[For] away games, everyone will do secret sisters and give each other snacks,” Peng said. “And then for home games, we’ll make little notes and secretly give it to the person.” 

The team also strengthens their relationships outside of their practices and games by going to sleepovers, pumpkin patches and other fun events they have planned. 

“Every week before a game we have a team dinner,” Oladosu said. “We also have different activities we do, like handshakes, with everyone, and I would say it’s a lot more of a community this year.” 

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About the Contributor
Iris Huang (she/her), Junior PR Manager
Sophomore Iris Huang can’t wait to start her second year in Nordic News as Junior PR Manager. She is excited to meet new people and improve her writing skills throughout the year! Iris swims for Inglemoor, plays flute in the school’s band, and participates in clubs like DECA and National Honor Society. Outside of school, she enjoys listening to music, sleeping, doing art, and hanging out with friends.

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