Volleyball season is here at last. After falling to Southwestern in the SCAC finals last season, the girls are Â preparing for a tough lineup of competition this season.
â€œIâ€™m looking forward to the strength of our schedule and the opportunities that lie ahead of us,â€ said Julie Jenkins, head volleyball coach, senior woman administrator and associate director of athletics.
The Tigers open the season against number one ranked Cal Lutheran at the Pacific Coast Classic. During the season, they go head to head with nine nationally ranked teams.
â€œWe play a lot of ranked teams,â€ said Lauren Skrobarczyk, first-year middle blocker. â€œEven if we donâ€™t win all the matches, weâ€™re definitely getting better with every game that we play and thatâ€™s exciting.â€
With such a strenuous schedule, the team is eager to improve their game as the anticipation of the opportunities the season will bring steadily mounts.
â€œA lot of it has to do with mental toughness,â€ said Maggi Linker, first-year middle blocker. â€œThatâ€™s something each of us individually can control, that you canâ€™t always control the outcome of every play.â€
â€œWe have been talking in our team meetings about how we can improve our mental approach to the game, ways that we can be better teammates, ways that we can be even stronger mentally,â€ Jenkins said, â€œweâ€™ve definitely taken time with that and the reason being is because we are so young.â€
The seven sophomores, three juniors, and one senior that make up the team have welcomed eight first years. These new players have spent the past few weeks integrating themselves into the team. As a whole. the team has been working hard to learn the sets and build cohesiveness.
â€œRight now I think it just takes a little bit to just build up connections, for the newcomers to understand our defense and offense,â€ said Erika Edrington, senior setter.
â€œComing in as a first year you never know what to expect but the team has meshed really well,â€ Skrobarczyk said.
The players feel their unity is a distinct advantage.
â€œOur greatest strength lies in how each of our individual personalities come together as a team and how theyâ€™re gonna transfer over onto the court,â€ Linker said, â€œSome teams have issues with how personalities come together and I can already tell weâ€™re not gonna have that.â€
The group can function on the court because of their closeness off it. This sense of trust will benefit them come game time.
â€œThe whole vibe of our team has always been working for each other instead of by yourself and that really helps us,â€ Edrington said.
â€œThe team chemistry is dynamite and theyâ€™re a pleasure to coach. Where we are right now Iâ€™m pretty happy,â€ Jenkins said, â€œWe need to keep working this hard each and every week.â€
The team foresees this season allowing plenty of opportunities for growth, as well as Â many entertaining matches.
â€œTheyâ€™ve always been a fun team to watch but I think even more so,â€ Jenkins said, â€œI think itâ€™s gonna be a fast paced game and one that students will really enjoy watching.â€
As Trinity volleyball prepares to face some tough competition, they welcome the opportunity to learn, grow and rise to the challenge. During the season Trinity will face a number of ranked teams, and knocking one off would allow for Trinity to improve drastically.
â€œWeâ€™re gonna get opportunities every weekend to break into that top 25 poll,â€ Jenkins said.
In addition to improving in their rankings, Trinity volleyball is looking forward to improving in their individual and team wide approach to the game.
â€œIâ€™m anticipating a lot of growth from each one of us all the way down from us as freshmen to our senior leader,â€ Linker said, â€œJust everyone growing together.â€
As they head into the season, the Tigers Â are clearly stoked with tons of confidence and are ready to embrace any and all challenges that lie ahead.