DAYTON — The Tri-Village volleyball team took big steps in volleyball skills and team bonding this past weekend as 12 Lady Patriot players spent the weekend at a team camp at the University of Dayton.
For the first time, Tri-Village volleyball coach Rebecca Rother and her team traveled for a camp together. The Patriots brought 12 players — the maximum allowed for the team camp — and learned from the UD volleyball program.
“It was very successful for our team,” Rother said. “It was what we needed as a program.”
The camp included a combination of individual skills and team competition including matches against the other schools in attendance — Meadowdale, Oakwood and Vandalia Butler.
“They worked very hard; they were tired,” Rother said. “They got special attention from UD. They did some fun things in the evenings after they were done playing. So it was a really great experience for the kids.”
There was a lot of focus on ball handling, passing and serving during the four-day camp.
“They got to work in positions that maybe they hadn’t played before or really needed the coaching,” Rother said.
It also was beneficial to Rother, who got to see her team play for the first time this year and received instruction from the Dayton coaches.
“I learned a lot about my team specifically,” she said. “It was beneficial all the way around.”
The camp began Thursday afternoon and continued through Sunday afternoon with the Patriots spending nights in Dayton.
It was a tremendous help in learning and bonding, Rother said, as the Patriots had a young squad that included six freshmen, two sophomores and four seniors in attendance.
“It was definitely a step in the right direction for the program,” she said.
While those 12 potential varsity players learned a lot and the program is moving in the right direction, Rother said, the Patriots’ roster is still to be determined for the upcoming season. There’s still a lot of work to be done and roster spots still have to be earned.
The trip to the team camp was partially funded by the Spike Fest fundraiser that the Patriots held in May. The fundraiser included 11 teams of community members ranging from junior high to adults in a volleyball tournament that will become an annual event.
“That was a successful fundraiser for us and helped out immensely,” Rother said.
At the Dayton team camp, senior Brooke Mintkenbaugh, who is new to Tri-Village, was named the camper of the week. Senior Raya Mikesell and freshman Megan Poling earned camper of the day honors.