Unknowns surround Polk Volleyball
“I have never had a team like this before, a team that when the season started, I still didn’t know what I had,” Coach Rogers said.
At the end of the 2011 volleyball season, Polk Head Coach Danny Rogers resigned, saying that he didn’t feel he had done an adequate job and that someone else might do better. That someone else never materialized though and Coach Rogers agreed to come back one more year rather than let 8 year’s work in the volleyball program die. But what Rogers came back to was a lot of uncertainty.
“I have never had a team like this before, a team that when the season started, I still didn’t know what I had”, Rogers stated. “Never before have I had so many girls missing practices, having trouble with their work schedules, having too much on their “plate”, and basically just leaving the program either to do other things or because they couldn’t handle all the responsibilities, and some who don’t even know whether they are going to be able to play this year There are just a lot of unknowns that I still haven’t figured out and it is scary because our season is starting.” Despite all the unknowns however, the Lady Wildcats had a good pre-season. “We have basically lost only 1 scrimmage out of the 7 we have played. We beat McMinn County, Copper Basin, Sequoyah, tied McMinn Central, and beat Tyner and Silverdale Academy. CSAS was the only team to beat us.”
Another thing Rogers has been concerned about is the varsity players who chose not play again this year. “I had 3 good varsity players from last year that decided not to play again this year. And I was worried about how that would affect my varsity, but with the help of two transfers and some new players, we have more than filled those gaps. In fact, I believe that those 3 who quit at the end of last year would now have trouble just making this team. Still, even though we have a strong first 8, we could suffer from lack of depth should anything happen to any of those players.” Players who will be counted on this year for the Polk varsity will include seniors Emily Wilson , Kayla Lowe, and Carmela Martinez; juniors Catie Hughes, Angelica Martinez, Brittany Rymer, Ashley Jones, and Erin Fretwell; Emily Bates, a sophomore; and Cecilia Waldroup, a freshman. Sarah Jones will be assisting Rogers with the varsity this year.
In addition, the Lady Wildcat, JV, which won 15 of 16 matches last year, looks to be solid again this year. Along with new JV coach Rebecca Edwards, an influx of 5 freshmen from the middle school program will strengthen the returnees from last year.
Sophomores Emily Bates, Shyann Busey, Raleigh Woodmen, and Eryca Cross will be joined by ninth graders Katrina Brackett, Autumn Edwards, Beth Wilson, Hannah Withrow, Cecila Waldroup, and Mallorie Brock on this year’s JV team.
“I believe that this year will be a year of surprises and unexpected happenings,” Coach Rogers stated. “Our district this year is going to be the most competitive it has been in years and the championship is literally up for grabs. And, almost every team that we have on our schedule is going to be better and tougher to beat than they were last year. So, it will definitely be interesting.”
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