Volleyball players practicing their skills in the summer

A member of the Kern Valley summer squad volleyball team gets ready to slam down a spike in a recent game played in Bakersfield. Photo submitted by Jamie Duran.

By Ray Conner

A group of valley volleyball players went to Bakersfield each to enhance their talent on the courts.

This is not a win/loss program, but one that will improve their skills so it will translate on the volleyball court in the upcoming season. The summer is a time for players to correct some of the things they might have allowed to become habits during a long and tenuous season. 

The games played are more pick up style, as stats are not important or are they kept. The players are learning to be teammates and getting a chance to see where they stand coming into the next season of volleyball when the new school year starts.

Jamie Duran leads these young ladies and allows them to learn on the go. She wants them to figure things out on the court and get the players to be comfortable on the volleyball court with each other. The summer games consist of two sets to 21 points, with a cap score of 23. So far, they have played six games.

Duran said, “We have done very well. We use this league, not to win, but to try new things. To explore different rotations and positions, and to give multiple players touches on the court.”

Currently there are 12 players on the team. There is a mixture of varsity and some jayvee players. Kern Valley players are Ruby Hawkins, Paisley Wilkins, Ava Elliott, Jessie Bunting, Ellie Allen, Elli Jeans, Doslyn Epps, Riley Wilkins, Samantha Wyly. Ashley Plante, Kenadie Young, and Jade Montes.

Duran commented, “We pulled up some jayvee players for exposure and had a strong focus on communication as well as short term memory. Our swings look good as do our serves. This group is quick and continuing to improve on their court reads and passing.” 

Molding a team in the summer can only lead to good things happening on the volleyball court when it actually matters. In this these young ladies have a head start in creating what might be a team that will do good things on the court when they face down their opponents in the upcoming season.