Volleyball Coaches Impact

What Keeps Them Going

by Jackelyn Theiur, Social Media Editor

Behind any successful team is a coach to help keep the peace and motivate. Coaches do much more than direct their players on what to do, they also take on a role that’s beyond managing the team. Varsity volleyball coach Nikki Pugh organized a structured system that helps her team push through their losses and come back with wins by motivating them and maintaining a healthy environment for them to thrive.  

Some of the members of the team believe they are more efficient at helping their teammates than others, but they all strive to work together for the sake of the team’s success. When coaches are not available to solve the team’s problems right away, members learn to help their fellow players on their own. Senior varsity volleyball player Tayah Little believes that the team has been able to communicate consistently to keep the team strong. 

“Our coaches this season have created an environment allowing us to address each other’s problems which has made us stronger as a team,” Little said. “One of the key factors that helps us is learning each other’s communication style and team bonding.” 

In order to create a secure bond and connection with her students, Pugh has supported her team through rough times even beyond volleyball. Becoming such a reliable part of her players’ lives has improved her ability to get them through their losses. Senior varsity volleyball player Caitlyn Pinaga believes that Pugh’s support system guided them through tough games. 

“I know that she’s a rock for a few people on the team and she helps support them in other parts of their lives beyond volleyball,” Pinaga said. “Therefore her encouragement at the end of those tough games does a lot for their morale.”

 Pugh uses motivation and encouragement in order to remind the team that they all have a common goal. Reminding the team of all they’ve accomplished together helps them realize that it’s not player versus player, but rather the team versus the issue. Pugh favors having a family-like dynamic team, because if issues do begin to evolve, her players will feel comfortable expressing their emotions to her and the others. 

“I think it starts with me expressing my belief in them and me telling them about their success and the successes that I see for each one of them,” Pugh said. “We have some wins under our belts early [on], so we started off with a really strong record, and I think that helped us a lot.” 

Varsity volleyball team celebrates the winning game-point in the first set against Hebron Oct. 19.