A Team as a Whole
As with all sports seasons, there comes a time when games starts to slow down and the season ends. Now that the women’s volleyball season has come to a close, the coaches of the team—Josh Hammer, Darlene Hammer, and Andrea Atwood—are still bringing energy to their team. Although this season has not turned out exactly the way the team had expected, the coaches are still full of optimism.
During an interview with Josh Hammer before the last game of the season, he seemed eager to express his thoughts out: “Darlene is the culture keeper of the team,” since she establishes a “great environment, brings the team together, and brings spirits up.” Hammer also feels that the friendship these coaches have, a friendship that has been built over many years of working with and competing against each other, allows them to create the best team, and future teams, they possibly can. In fact, because these coaches coach some of “the top club teams in Kentucky,” they feel as though they can build contacts easier and scout the best players, some of whom are on their current team.
These coaches are mentioned that despite the season coming to a close, there are three goals they want to achieve for next season: “Be competitive, play hard, and enjoy it.” Hammer also mentioned two key players, both juniors: Sydney Beckelyhmer and Kacy York. “Sydney is a great player,” Josh said, “who leads the USCAA in digs per set and total digs for the season,” whereas “York is a great leader who is always setting an example for her team. She is also someone who is loud and proud on the court.”
Luckily, these two players will be back with the team next year, which is something the coaches and team can be happy about. However, Hammer also mentioned that all his players are important, especially to one another. “The team is never separated from each other,” Hammer says. “And even when they are, there is never a teammate by herself. They take care of each other.” Thus, Hammer believes these players are not just good teammates; they are also good friends.
Although the season has ended, these coaches are still proud of their team. Because this season was the coaching staff’s first season and the staff’s first recruiting class at the UC Clermont, these coaches could not be happier with how their season progressed. When discussing their team’s success this year, Hammer said, “We’re going to build off this year for next season,” a season that Hammer believes will be reserved for excellence. Now that the coaches have their first year under their belts, parents, fans, and faculty should be excited for what the next season may bring, as these players and coaches will now have an additional year of experience before playing again. Finally, Josh noted: “Every single role on this team is important, and I want everyone to be recognized,” thus making it clear no player or coach on this team is more significant than the rest, and the team’s success relies heavily on the team as a whole.