Tuesday, September 3, 2013

UIS hopes newcomers can help spark turnaround

Noelle Rooke has settled in as coach of the University of Illinois Springfield volleyball team, yet “new” has become a repeating theme. As well as a point of pride.

“This is a whole new team,” said Rooke, in her second season. “We have a whole new face about us, literally. It’s so exciting.”

With six returning players and nine newcomers, including seven freshmen, the Prairie Stars have a different look.

Although new to each other, it didn’t stop the players from conquering a victory on the opening day of practice by figuring out one particular drill quicker than expected.

“It’s a mental drill that’s very controlled and there has to be a lot of communication,” Rooke said. “Obviously a new team that doesn’t know each other, you’d think it would be hard for them to get it. Last year’s team didn’t get it. This year’s team got it right away.”

The team was featured by The State Journal-Register on September 3, 2013.

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