Women’s Volleyball Goes for Conference Three-Peat

Josh Champlin, Sports Editor

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The 2013 Mesa women’s volleyball kicked off the defense of their 2011 and 2012 Pacific Coast Athletic Conference championships this weekend. The Lady Olympians defeated Bakersifield, 3-1, and lost to Santa Barbara in straight sets.

In the first match, coach Kim Lester said that the Lady Olympians “played a complete game as a team,” and was extremely pleased with her team’s effort. In the first match versus Bakersfield, Bethany Nosko led the team with 20 kills, and Emily Feerick had 15 kills. Coach Lester was very pleased with Sierra Ingraham, who had 12 kills, and only 1 error. Taylor Reaume had 42 assists.

Coach Lester was not pleased with the overall effort in the loss to Santa Barbara, saying “Absolutely nothing went right. Our passing was horrible. Our serving was terrible. We just did not get a lot of fight from the girls. Our center, Taylor Reaume, she was the only one who was truly competing 100% of the time, and trying to make things happen.”

The Olympians are looking to successfully defend their  2011 and 2012 PCAC championships this year, and are led by Coach Kim Lester, who has a .744 career winning percentage (.898 conference record) at Mesa. Coach Lester will be chasing her sixth conference championship.

For that to happen this year, Coach Lester said, “We need to keep improving in all aspects of the game. Our serve/receive is probably going to predict how we’re going to do. If we can pass the ball, we have a really good chance of playing with anybody.”

The Lady Olympians return seven players from last year, with several players drawing interest from division 1 schools. Bethany Nosko has already been offered by San Diego State, and coach Lester was optimistic about several other players moving on to four-year schools.

Coach Lester has not selected team captains yet. “We have a problem with leadership in general. We haven’t really had anybody step up into that role yet.”

When asked what it would take for another conference championship, coach Lester said, “We play to win. But for me, it’s just about getting the girls to compete. If my girls can walk into the gym and give everything they have, no matter what the result is, either way, they leave the court thinking “I gave everything I could,” that’s success. That’s a successful season.”

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