Experienced Skipjacks look for second-year improvement
Chesapeake College's all-freshman team posted a 4-10 record last year as the Skipjacks made their return to women's volleyball.
WYE MILLS Chesapeake College’s all-freshman team posted a 4-10 record last year as the Skipjacks made their return to women’s volleyball. Head coach Jay Covey expects the five sophomores back from that squad to provide the experience that will help Chesapeake field a much more competitive team.
"I think we’re better now than we were when we ended last season," said Covey, whose 2007 team nearly crashed the Region XX Final Four after playing markedly better in the second half of the season. "With the experience our sophomores gained last season, I’d like to be at least .500 this year. I think they’re capable of that, or even better."
Covey has three starting hitters middle hitters Kyra Ringgold and Verushka Perez, and outside hitter Jordan Glessner back from last year’s team.
"Obviously the experience they gained last year at this (JuCo) level has made them better players," said Covey, who added Glessner is also "really bringing the leadership that we need."
Two freshmen 2007 North Bayside Player of the Year O’Sha Adams (North Caroline High) and Lexie Holder (Colonel Richardson High) look to break into the starting lineup. Adams is an outside hitter/setter while Holder is an off-hand hitter/setter.
"O’Sha really brings a lot to the table. She’s very talented and very versatile," said Covey. "Lexie is a heck of a server. When she gets on a roll, she’s pretty tough to stop."
Sophomores Diana Dieter and Tiara Whye will share the final starting position, with Dieter serving as a back-row specialist and Whye playing on the front row.
"Tiara is coming along well, especially as a blocker," said Covey. "She’s also learning to hit a little harder."
Two freshmen Lindsey Farinholt (Chesapeake Christian) and Sara Bailey (Kent Island High) round out the squad and will see considerable playing time.
"We’ll be using them (Farinholt and Bailey) a lot," Covey said.
Covey said the Skipjacks have corrected for one of last year’s problems that went beyond talent.
"Our biggest problem last year was coming up with a lineup that had good chemistry," said Covey. "We’re trying to get that chemistry much sooner this year. The girls have spent a lot of time together off the court this year and they know what each other is about."
Covey’s squad will be dealing with two changes this year streamlined games and an upgraded schedule.
"Games have gone from 30 points to 25 points, which changes strategy a bit," said Covey. "And we’ve put together a tough schedule, including matches against the College of Southern Maryland and Hagerstown, which are two of the top teams in the conference."
The Skipjacks open their season Monday night at 6 p.m. when they host Anne Arundel Community College.
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