Volleyball to continue season with Volleypalooza tournament


Photo by Yasmin Haq

Sophomore Emory Coscia practices bumping the ball after school. The volleyball team practiced on August 14 from 4-5:30. “ [Practice] is just a way to get better at your skills and a way to improve for your team,” Coscia said.

The volleyball team will continue its regular season at Volleypalooza, a tournament in Austin, August 22-24. After last year’s first-round exit in the playoffs, the team is looking to rebound with a stronger performance this year. 

“It’s already a lot different in terms of the demeanor, the kids, what they’re bringing and specifically varsity, but as a program as a whole,” assistant coach Jennifer Bishop said. “The kids are all excited.”

Head coach Karin Keeney has missed a portion of the season due to a family emergency, so Bishop and the rest of the coaching staff have taken on greater roles within the team. 

“All the coaches are stepping up and kind of helping fill in some of the gaps,” Bishop said. “We’re all wanting to make her proud and have the team in a good place when she gets back.”

Many players will play new roles this year, including senior Nnedi Okammor.

“She’s really developed over the years and she’s really starting to show more leadership,” Bishop said. “She’s starting to mature, and I think she’s really going to be able to step up and help the team a lot more this year.”

LISD has several strong volleyball teams in the district, including last year’s state champions, Flower Mound. After going five sets at the Marcus Showcase with Keeney gone and four sophomores on the court, however, Bishop believes they can compete with the top of the district. 

“Flower Mound being in district twice will be huge, and I’m excited to see how [our players] step up and tackle that,” Bishop said. “One of the biggest rivalries we tend to have is with Marcus.”

Junior Brooke Nichols said the bond and friendship between the girls on the team this year will go a long way toward helping the team be successful, and that this year will be different from the last. 

“I think it’s going to be better,” Nichols said. “I think we have a lot more talent and a better foundation set for us. So I think it’s going to be a lot more competitive and fun.”