The Minot High Majettes volleyball team has done relatively well so far this year, holding an overall record of 7-7. Head coach Sherry Carlson said they have been working hard and running through drills to improve their game before the regional tournament that starts Nov. 10. The girls are counting on each other to do their best, and this is what Carlson had to say.
MDN: What were your expectations heading into the season?
Carlson: Expectations have been high as this group of girls have committed to their game last winter before COVID-19, sand volleyball this summer and camps.
MDN: Who are the top players on your team, and could you assess their overall performances?
Carlson: Morgan Wheeler is a senior and a six rotation player. She is counted on to help lead our offense but contributes consistently on defense. She is one of the top hitters in the WDA.
Paige Ackerman is also a senior and six rotation player. Her main role is setting from the back but imparts her leadership across the net with hitting and blocking too.
Reese Terrel leads in defense as our libero. She is counted on to do a lot of our serve receive and short play defense. Reese is also a senior.
Preslie Everson another senior, has a strong presence in the front row with her hitting abilities and blocking.
MDN: Aside from those standout players, who are some of the other girls that also made their presence known throughout the season?
Carlson: Cambry Frantsvog is the other setter in our 6-2 offensive. Cambry brings a sense of calm to the game. As a junior she moves and reads well.
MDN: Given this new era of social distancing, what kind of impact did that have on the actual competition?
Carlson: We have been able to play all our matches so far. The look of post-season will be different but we are so thankful for every match we get. We have had girls in and out of quarantine and I, myself had COVID-19. We roll with the punches and treat every day as a gift.
MDN: Looking ahead to the next stage in competition, can you describe the overall direction of the program and where things are headed?
Carlson: The program has changed because we do not have to work. Our basics as in years past. We are at a different level in drills and offensively. Our middle schools have really stepped up with skills along with many of our graduating players investing back into the program. Some coach during the season and others coach during our summer camps. They are committed to helping build this program. I believe SOS Empire has increased volleyball awareness with their many skill and training camps. Minot State offers a junior olympic program and girls are active there. With the help of Minot Recreation programs, some of our athletes are playing in the adult leagues and then student summer sand volleyball. I am grateful for all these avenues as it is changing the level of our play.
MDN: How many seasons have you been the head coach at Magic City, and what is the most rewarding aspect of your job?
Carlson: This is my fifth year at Minot High. I came from Our Redeemer’s, having coached at Bishop Ryan, Century High School-Bismarck, and Shiloh Christian in Bismarck.
The most rewarding aspect of my job are the girls. I love the game of volleyball but I always hope I am teaching them more about life than anything.
MDN: During the past few games, your team has been consistent in earning points. What is the key to that consistency?
We still struggle with consistency but continue to work on less errors and earning points, and also work on situational plays through drills.
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