The Garrison Troopers volleyball team is on a mission this season to make it back to a spot they were so close to last year: the region tournament.
“We’re better than we were when we ended our season last year,” said Tina Irish, head coach.
Irish is heading into her second season as head coach of the Troopers.
In 2020, the girls went 11-6, punching a ticket to the regional tournament
But all of their hard work came to a screeching halt the morning of Nov. 10 when they got the phone call that COVID had hit the team.
“It was really sad. We all really wanted to go to regionals and we wanted to go far. It was kind of disappointing. But, we’re going to come back this year and we’re going to play far,” said Madelin Hurt, outside hitter.
“I was crushed. My reason was kind of different than the rest of the girls because I had it in my household. I guess I would’ve been out because of the household thing. But, I was really sad and then hearing that the entire team was out, I was crushed for everyone else too because it was on the day and we were so excited to play,” said Karli Klein, middle hitter.
“I wouldn’t call it a ‘chip,’ I’d call it aggression. They’re ready to play,” Irish said.
They say one of their secrets to success from last season that they’re looking to replicate is the team bonding.
“We were able to overcome a lot of problems considering the year before we graduated seven or eight seniors. So we were able to fill those spots and just make sure that everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing,” Klein said.
Good communication was also in the team’s arsenal no matter a game’s outcome.
“We didn’t really get down on each other. We didn’t get mad at each other on the court. We stayed positive,” Hurt said.
With a roster predominantly made up of juniors, these ladies are leaving it all on the court in order to make it back.
“We have a lot of younger girls that are ready to take up those positions and are ready to do their part. Everyone wants to go far this year,” Klein said.
“We felt sad last year, and now, it’s like, we’re ready. It’s our time,” Irish added.