Not having home court advantage or being unable to practice on your own can be a challenge for high school sports teams. This is one challenge the Essex Volleyball program is faced with as renovations continue on the high school.
Returning after a short-lived postseason appearance last season and losing some familiar faces to start the season Essex coach Britney Sgroi is still able to find
excitement in starting a new year.
“I am very excited for the season! I have a great group of girls that seem to mesh well together,” Sgroi said.
The returning coach said she lost four graduates and will miss them, but hopes her players will capitalize on the opportunities ahead.
“I have a athletic team with a lot of potential,” Sgroi said, adding that the first week of September was the first time her girls step foot on a regulation-sized court. Practices have been held at the Essex Intermediate School since early August.
“Yes we have not had a chance to practice on a regulation court and JV and varsity have had to share the gym. Anytime you have that many girls in one gym it is hard to eliminate down time. However, we have made the best of the situation,” Sgroi said.
Lacey Berry will join Sgroi on the varsity coaching staff with the departure of Kristen Patterson. Samantha English inherits the defending regular season district champion JV volleyball team.
Kaitlin Saunders returns as the only senior on the team. Juniors Destiny Skolarus, Kallie Carson, Jamie Thompson and Savannah Wood join Saunders as the upperclassmen followed by sophomores Britney Owens and Alexis Packett.
Arleigh Wood and Kayla Fones represent the team’s freshman class.
“These girls are extremely talented, I have a potentially amazing team,” Sgroi said. “My goal is to bring this team to the top of their game and have a blast doing it!”