Soroco setters will rely on seniors

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Soroco volleyball

Saturday at Grand Valley tournament, TBA

Sept. 7 vs. Hayden, 6 p.m.

Sept. 13 at Vail Christian, 6:30 p.m.

Sept. 14 at Meeker, 6 p.m.

Sept. 20 at North Park, 6 p.m.

Sept. 21 vs. West Grand, 6 p.m.

Sept. 25 vs. Vail Mountain, 6:30 p.m.

Sept. 28 at Paonia, 6 p.m.

Oct. 4 vs. North Park, 6 p.m.

Oct. 5 at Hayden, 6 p.m.

Oct. 6 vs. Plateau Valley, 3 p.m.

Oct. 13 at West Grand, 3 p.m.

Oct. 16 vs. Vail Christian, 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 19 vs. Grand Valley, 6 p.m.

Oct. 20 vs. Rangely, 3 p.m.

— On Wednesday, members of the Soroco volleyball team ran a mile.

Conditioning - evident from the mile run and two-a-day practices - is something first-year coach Kim Reeves has preached this year.

But while new coaching positions can cause some unknowns and tension, Reeves has taken a different approach - one that has endeared her to her team.

Reeves isn't just the instructor, she's a participant. She was right there with her players during the run Wednesday.

"The main thing is, if I'm going to get you to do something physical, I'm going to do it as well," said Reeves, who helped coach the Rams last year. "It brings a different kind of respect."

That respect - and eight seniors - are expected to drive the team this year, Reeves said.

With returning starters Kelsey Samuelson, Amanda Wilson, Glenda Long and Sarajane Rossi, Reeves said she expects big things.

"It's been really good," Reeves said. "We have a rapport, so I know what to expect. I think the expectations are higher than they expected."

While Reeves wouldn't put a win total on those expectations, she said it's safe to say the Rams will be improved from last year.

Reeves hasn't settled on a starting lineup, but she said early indications from practice have her eyeing a starting squad not based on skill alone.

"It's really about who is going to mesh together," she said. "It's all about the relationships."

It's those relationships - especially among the seniors - that will drive the Rams.

"We're more of a team," senior Aryn Kresl said. "Maybe it's just because we're all seniors now, but there's definitely team chemistry."

It also helps that Reeves can relate to most of the girls. Reeves - who spent a year coaching the middle school program before becoming a high school assistant last year - often participates with the team in practices.

Reeves said working out with the players gives her an advantage when it comes to dealing with them. Unlike some coaches, Reeves said she can relate with her players in many different ways.

"I think she's the best coach," senior Mikal Achtner said. "She does the workouts with us. It's like she's part of the team."

While Reeves wasn't sure where the team would finish in the league, she said with the core of the Rams roster being seniors, she expects a solid season.

"My big thing is we really want to have fun," Reeves said. "Obviously winning is more fun than losing, but I think if the girls walk away from the season saying they had fun, it's a success."

- To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229

or e-mail lgraham@steamboatpilot.com

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