Polk County Volleyball Club opens season with new team, strong showings

The three teams that comprise Polk County Volleyball Club in 2017, with the 12u team at bottom, 14u yeam in the middle and 16u team at top.

Polk County Volleyball Club rolled into its 2017 season Saturday with a new team and a successful first tournament showing.

Gearing up for its third year of competition, PCVC has added a 12-and-under team currently under the direction of Polk County Middle School head coach Matthew Russell, filling in for Polk County High School head volleyball coach Molly Hill, who is out on maternity leave.

The 12u squad joins the 14-and-under team in its second year and under the direction of PCMS assistant coach Donna Hall and the 16-and-under team being led this season by PCHS seniors Addie Lynch and Georgia Garrett.

Players on the 16u team are in their third year of action with PCVC, having been part of the club’s inaugural team.

All three teams competed Saturday in the Southeast Alliance Volleyball League’s Icebreaker Challenge, held in the Greenville and Spartanburg area. It is the first of seven tournaments scheduled for the club through late April, when the SAVL Championship is held in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. All tournaments are roughly within a two-hour drive from Polk County, a goal of the club to keep weekend travel to a minimum.

The 12u team finished third in the Silver Bracket and 11th overall in its age group, going 2-2 for the weekend. One of those losses came to MVP 12 Gold, the top-seeded team entering the event.

The 12u team includes: Susanna Ashworth, Adair Edwards, Emily Gaul, Allison Kennedy, Annslee Kilgore, Frances Padgett, Amberlyn Scruggs, Ella Waldman and Cameron Ward.

The 14u squad enjoyed a stellar opener, reaching the championship match in the Gold Bracket. PCVC 14u finished 4-1, falling to Upward Stars 14 25-20, 25-16 in the championship match. The team won eight of 10 sets during the day.

The 14u team includes: Rollins Carter, Marilyn Castillo, Rachael Davis, Kristen Hall, Kaitlyn Harmon, Kaylin Jenkins, Emmie McDowell, Kylee Mullis and Marissa Twitty.

Polk County High head volleyball coach Molly Hill, left, visited the 16u team during their tournament play on Saturday (photo courtesy Renae Dusenbury Waldman).

The PCVC 16u squad is comprised of 14- and 15-year-olds competing at the 16u level in order to face tougher competition. The squad placed third in the Silver Bracket and seventh overall on Saturday, going 2-2. One of those two losses was a 25-20, 25-22 setback against Xcel 16X Mizuno, which reached the championship match. The other loss was a 26-24, 26-24 decision.

The 16u team includes: Meadow Becker, Carolina Castillo, Grace Lauer, Sydney Metcalf, Karla Olguin, Mireya Roman, Alex Romano and Sydney Waldman.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story stated that Lynch and Garrett were filling in for Hill. Hill will be coaching the 12u team when she returns from maternity leave and isn’t involved with the 16u squad.