The Kankakee Community College volleyball team enters a new season with a group of three returners and eight new players joining the program. Overall, the Lady Cavaliers have a new team and new opportunities to rise above and compete this season.
“I have no concerns about having a team that is mainly freshmen. I feel that the sophomores will be able to follow along with everyone else or lead accordingly,” stated Head Coach Stephenee Yancy.
Yancy is in her second season as head coach of the KCC volleyball team. She is joined in coaching by Alexa Wood. Woods is a KCC Volleyball Alumni and brings a different coaching perspective to the team.
“I was nervous at first with this being my first-year coaching. Now that we have started, I am much more comfortable and confident in leading the girls. I think I bring a lot of explanation to our team. When the girls ask a question, I can not only answer it but also break it down further if needed,” stated Woods. She continued, “My goals for this season are that I want the girls to fight for every game. I also want them to progressively get better. Overall, I want us to have a good region record as well as a good overall record.”
The three returning sophomores have great experience and prove to be key components to the team. Kassidi Burton, Jessica Schindler, and Kaylee Spegal lead the team in experience.
One of KCC’s strengths will be its back row. Jenna Marion, Andela Spasojevic, and Kloe Longtin provide solid defense and serve receive. “Our defense has come a long way since the first day of practice. We’ve made huge improvements. Now it is just fine-tuning things and changing our defense based on our opponent. I want our back row to eat everything. Other teams should have to work extra hard to put the ball down because our back row is picking everything up,” added Coach Woods.
The Cavaliers offense will also be a force to reckon with. Joining Burton on the outside is Alyssa Rodriguez. She is a great asset to have on the outside. Lanie Wilcox joins Schindler as a middle hitter. They keep the defending teams defense on their toes with hard hits, tips, and off-speed shots. As for right side hitters, Kyla Glover takes the spot and makes it her own. Ashley Harwood is a versatile player who can play any position she is put in. “I think it is great to have a player that is able to step in and do whatever is needed for the team. Not many people are able to do this, so it is a great option to have,” said Yancy. Overall, the Lady Cavaliers have a lot of potential and can pull off some wins.