CJ Robinson, Reporter
The smack of volleyballs echo through the Pierce College Fort Steilacoom gym, followed by an array of commentary from the players who make up the Raider volleyball team. Head coach Shawnna Sessler and assistant coach Greg Finel stop the warm-ups to give advice while the players listen intently on adjustments to better their game play.
The season officially started Aug. 16. The team began practicing for more than three hours a day and working constantly as a “family.”
“As the team started building, the success just started overflowing,” Finel said.
Once Sessler and Finel understood the team’s potential, their goals for Raider volleyball changed drastically. Both coaches say they hope to make it to the top four in the Northwest Athletic Conference, the parent organization for 35 community colleges around Washington, Oregon, Idaho and British Columbia.
The coaches also mentioned the idea of growth and family within the team.
“When you have one (player) that’s missing out of the puzzle, it’s noticeable, because that’s how well they fit together,” Sessler said.
By Sessler’s account, the team has been successful in creating the bond that they stress so greatly.
“You would never know these kids were put together two or three weeks ago,” Sessler said.
The players start up their drills again, but not without lighthearted comments and laughs. According to Sessler and Finel, every weekday for the next season these athletes will grow and share a bond that few can achieve.
So far, the team has garnered a 5-9 record. There are 13 more games scheduled until Nov. 19. According to the coaches, students are encouraged to attend games.
“You come out to a game and you’re not going to do anything but fall in love,” Finel said. “Our girls – they don’t cease to impress.”
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