UP Volleyball Camp Continues to Grow
Union Pines head volleyball coach Leslie Fish got exactly what she was hoping for this week.
Wednesday marked the end of the annual Union Pines volleyball camp that had a whopping 62 participants, topping the record set for attendance just last year by 10 campers.
2012 Union Pines Volleyball Camp
Head coach Leslie Fish and the Lady Vikings recently put the wraps on a successful three-day VB camp that drew a record-high 62 participants. The camp was held at Bob Ward Gymnasium in Cameron from Monday June 18 to Wed June 20. Photos by F.W. Manning II.
“We were shooting for 60 campers this season and it happened, so I was happy about that,” said Fish. “To me that is a sign that interest in the sport is growing in our community, which is exciting. It just goes to show that volleyball is getting more and more popular in this area.
“With our school, basketball and soccer camps always have good numbers, and this season basketball had 85 with boys and girls. So for us to have 62 — that is not too far away from them, so I am very pleased with the numbers we had this year.”
Each of the three days of camp, open to rising fourth- through eighth-graders, began at 9 a.m. and ran through noon at Bob Ward Gymnasium in Cameron. The first thing campers would do is go through a warm-up session by stretching and some type of cardio exercise. Next the entire camp would play an ice-breaker game where different aged kids would partner up.
From there campers entered daily station work, with a total of six stations, including passing, blocking, serving, setting, attacking and approach/footwork.
“On Monday we really focused on individual skills,” said Fish. “We got down to the very basic fundamentals of a proper pass and set from a seated position and progressed from there in an attempt to make sure all the girls were aware of the proper technique before they got going full bore.
“Then Tuesday we reviewed our skills and footwork we learned Monday and added serving and blocking. Then in station work the focus was to build on the basic skills the girls had learned and progress. Then Wednesday was more about refinement in station work, but fun in term of group games.”
Each station was led by at least two current Union Pines Lady Viking players.
Overall, 15 Vikes served as counselors for the camp, including five returning varsity players — Brittany Erickson, Tiffany Hicks, Ashlyn Owens, Zazil Porras and Kelsey Troyer — and 10 junior varsity members from last season, including Chandler Adams, Shelby Boyette, Rachel Breasseale, Charlotte Holder, McKayla Kraft, Katelyn Martin, Brook Phillips, Abby Price, Jessica Riley and Rachel Strickland.
Fish feels that the interaction between her players and campers has always been one of the camp’s most significant components and serves a mutually beneficial relationship. She also feels the mixture of ages for the camp was encouraging.
“We had especially strong numbers in our rising fourth grade, rising sixth grade and rising seventh-grade groups being the largest,” said Fish. “The rising sixth-graders are starting to look at all the different sports the middle schools offer.
“So they are coming to give it a shot and get a head start with the sport, which is fantastic. I preach all the time when I speak to sixth-graders at the middle schools about how critical it is for them to go ahead and start learning all the skills now instead of waiting until they are in the seventh grade.”
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