The Rappahannock Volleyball program last season made some notable strides last year towards becoming a lasting contender in the region. From the JV team being named runners up with the regular season district title and the varsity team winning the region, the coaching staff has plenty to be joyous about this year.
Second-year varsity head coach Woody Campbell returns with three returning starters from last year’s Region A Championship Team. This includes all region and district team member Hallie Berger who will join Brandi Mulvena, another all district team member as the co-captains.
“We have good returning players and lots of leadership,” Campbell said.
Seniors Katelin Hamilton and Hannah Park also return as Campbell’s top returners along with his senior co-captains.
Campbell said this year his staff has added more games and tough competitors including two-time defending state champion Mathews Lady Blue Devils, St. Margarets and Central Virginia Home School.
“During the nondistrict schedule we are going to focus on fundamentals and getting them prepared for the district schedule,” Campbell said. Last year the team played 15 during the regular season in comparisons to the 20 in 2013.
“I’m really excited about Mathews because they are a powerhouse volleyball team,” Berger said, adding that she predicts a good matchup against the Raiders.
Campbell has four juniors that he expects to be top contributors to the team this year. Coming up from the JV are juniors Makenzie Hall, Lori Gagnon, Taylor Yeatman and Rachel Douglas.
Last season the varsity team finished with an overall record of 15-5 after being bumped out of the state tournament in the opening round, winning the Region A Division 1 championship and placing second in the district.
“We could have a better year if we live up to our potential,” Campbell said.
Campbell said he hopes to apply a new offense and tips learned this summer through camp put on by Matchpoint Club Volleyball.
Coach Logan Wilson, formally Spruill, is also looking to groom the new faces on the JV Team after finishing second in the district regular season.
“It’s very encouraging and I hope we can do better than we did last year,” Wilson said. “We have four returners and the rest are pretty new to volleyball so it’s going to be a challenge, but I know they can do it because they’re coming out to practice every day and working hard.”