A season of growth for SCA volleyball

Published 10:44 pm Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Suffolk Christian Academy girls’ volleyball team finished the year with a 2-13 overall record, but a record does not necessarily tell the whole story of a season.

“It’s been a very good season as far as team chemistry,” Lady Knights coach Kristy Patton said. “The team worked well together, they improved with each match.”

She said that when it came down to it at the end of the season, “we just weren’t at the level of Oaktree (Academy) and Summit (Christian Academy).”

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Suffolk Christian’s season came to an end with a straight sets loss to Oaktree in the first round of the conference tournament.

“You’ve just got to hand it to them — just a solid, consistent volleyball team,” Patton said of Oaktree.

Oaktree went on to win the conference tournament championship, defeating Summit 3-2.

Patton said her team had some matches it should not have lost this season, but she was confident those missteps would not have been repeated in rematches.

“I think if we could start over again where we are now and with what we’ve learned, I think we’d fare much differently,” she said.

The Lady Knights competed this year without libero Kelly Lester, who graduated, and junior outside hitters Jordan Edler and Julia Powell, who transferred, but the team still had good leadership.

The roster featured five seniors, two juniors, two sophomores and two freshmen.

Patton noted the seniors would not let their teammates slack off or get down on themselves, and she also had younger players who led in their own way.

“They’re not going to step up and verbally lead the upperclassmen, but they are leaders in the way that they play and the way that they carry themselves,” Patton said.

One of the seniors was a newcomer but also a team captain — Angel Aydlett.

Patton described her as a very competitive athlete that leads verbally, as well as by example, exuding confidence.

“She’s been a real good addition,” the coach said during the season. “She’s an outside hitter for us right now, but really, she can do anything.”

Patton highlighted senior outside hitter Emma VanDorn for her consistency, as well as senior middle blocker Jasmine Smith for her progress in the middle where she produced offensively and defensively.

Juniors Grace Fowler and Megan Harris traded off playing setter, and senior Brianna Farrenkopf also developed well at that position, proving herself able to throw off opposing teams with her sets.

Patton praised Farrenkopf, also an outside hitter, for being a pretty consistent server, too.

The coach highlighted senior outside hitter Sarah Francis and sophomore middle hitter/outside hitter Miriam Farmer before mentioning several up-and-comers, including sophomore Eva Waddell, who she said can play anywhere on the court.

“I’m anxious to see what she develops into,” Patton said, noting she played setter and had potential to become an outside hitter with power.

Freshman libero Kaitlyn Brittingham drew praise from her coach for being a solid athlete with quick feet who will definitely be a force in the future.

Patton spotlighted freshman outside hitter Meredith Farmer for her potential at the service line.