After a grueling volleyball season filled with multiple matches, pools of tournaments and sometimes long road trips, it is only natural for athletes and coaches to unplug and recharge their batteries.
However, for some players, there isn’t a thing like an offseason. For a handful of these competitors, they simply choose to not only to gain some invaluable experience but also immerse in what could be considered “training.”
This was the exact case for the first annual Perry Jayette AAU spring volleyball team, which has been traveling all over the southeast region since February.
Not only are they making a name for themselves, but they are at the same time preparing for when it is their turn to don the high school’s blue and whites.
“This was the first year that we set up an AAU program with our middle school girls,” head coach John Fulton said. “Hopefully we continue to grow our program next year as I see us having a high school AAU team in addition to two middle school teams.”
Currently, the team is made up of a combination of seventh and eighth graders who have played in all eighth-grade tournaments, Fulton noted.
In their first action of the young season on Feb. 16, the young team traveled to Adel and finished third overall in tournament bracket play.
According to the head coach, his 10 players not only posted a top three finish but also recorded a 4-2 record.
In pool play, they swept ADM (21-12, 21-19), split the series with Winterset 1-1 (21-17, 14-21) and came back against Nevada to even that series (15-21, 21-14).
Two weeks later on March 2, they headed to Ankeny Centennial middle school where they finished ninth overall but third in pool play.
In bracket play, they fell to Newton (15-21, 21-15, 14-16), and finished with a win-loss record of 3-5 in pool play.
Against the field:
v. Ankeny (19-15, 19-13)
v. Ames 0-2 (14-19, 15-19)
v. GMG 1-1 (14-19, 19-15)
v. DCG 0-2 (11-19,1-19)
Regardless of the outcomes, Fulton is proud of what this fresh-faced team is doing and how they are shaping what will eventually be the future of Jayette high school volleyball.
“We really just want to get our girls’ more competitive touches throughout the year, which allows us to kind of cut down that gap from the end of the high school season to the beginning of the next season,” he said.
Team members include:Taylor AtwellKathryn WestAshley CernaKaylee BrockYamilet OrtegaAnh DoanMaci TuninkCallie StevaAddison HuntingtonZoey Vail