The Palo Alto High School girls’ volleyball team is preparing for the 2015 season with their new coach, Jekara Wilson.
The team has had a new coach each season for the past three years. Though Wilson is the new varsity coach, she has been a part of the Paly volleyball program for nine years.
“I don’t think having a new coach has affected us a lot this year” Jessica Lee (‘16) said. “Also many of the girls on the team have played for her and really like her.”
Besides having a new coach, the team is facing many obstacles this season. Seven key players graduated last year, leaving the team with no one over six feet tall. The team has been preparing in preseason to adjust to a new way of play.
“We lost a lot of our hitters but we are working on being smarter team in the sense of placing our shots” Lee said. “We are being more disciplined and doing more drills, and we are working on running a faster offense.”
Another obstacle the team is facing is not having a home gym. The Vikings will now have to commute to Gunn High School for practice and home games. Surprisingly, the new gym, along with team bonding hikes, have brought the team closer together this season.
“The gym construction, has effected the teams time management” Coach Jekara Wilson said. “Ironically, as a displaced team, I think they have established an even stronger bond than I normally see this early in the season.”
Some returning key players to watch out for are Lee, a setter, Claire Dennis (‘16), a middle blocker, and Chelsea Fan (‘18), an outside hitter. The team is looking to come back from many difficulties and succeed this season.
“We are resilient, athletic, smart, driven and overall maintain a solid IQ when it comes to volleyball” Wilson said.
The Paly girls varsity volleyball team kicks of their season on Tuesday, September 22, against Mountain View at Gunn.