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Polk County Volleyball Club

Pushing to improve: Local club volleyball program grows, adds new coaches

A conference championship for Polk County Middle School. A conference championship and state quarterfinal appearance for Polk County High. There’s certainly a case to be made that scholastic volleyball has never been stronger in the county than this past season.

A conference championship for Polk County Middle School. A conference championship and state quarterfinal appearance for Polk County High. There’s certainly a case to be made that scholastic volleyball has never been stronger in the county than this past season.

Hoping to continue that upward surge, Polk County High head coach Molly Hill and Polk Middle assistant coach Donna Hall have joined a local club volleyball program that is also adding a second team for the upcoming spring season.

A group of local parents launched Polk County Volleyball Club last year, recruiting former Polk County High head coach Heather Claussen to lead the fledgling travel program. Starting a local club, the group felt, could help players enjoy the benefits of offseason competition while avoiding the high fees and extensive travel of some of the region’s larger club programs.

Despite its startup status, PCVC quickly progressd and finished third in its final tournament last spring against larger and more established programs, and many of those players then led Polk Middle to the Blue Ridge Middle School Conference championship this fall. Wolverine head coach Matthew Russell said the PCVC experience undoubtedly played a role in his team’s success.

With Claussen moving out of the area last year, PCVC needed a new head coach, and Hill proved a natural choice. She will lead the PCVC 14s, with Hall coming on board to lead the 13s team.

“They approached me and asked if I would be interested, and I was,” Hill said. “I talked to my husband about it, and we decided that it would be good for us and good for the program and good for the middle school program.

“A goal of mine is to make volleyball well-known in this area and grow it, and this helps with that.”

Polk County volleyball coach Molly Hill

Polk County volleyball coach Molly Hill

Funded by player fees and sponsorships, the two teams will each compete in five area tournaments this spring, with the 14s set to play Jan. 23 in the Southeast Alliance Volleyball League Ice Breaker tourney in Hendersonville and the 13s opening competition Feb. 6 at the SAVL Mizuno Challenge in Columbia, S.C.

For Hill, the three months of practice and competition will give her an opportunity to interact with players who will be joining the Polk County High program in the fall.

“For my age group, this will help develop them toward a high school mentality,” she said. “We’ve got to get quicker and get more comfortable with a faster pace of game play. I want them really start to feel comfortable with the faster pace of play and get used to it.

“They’re also getting to know me and my personal coaching style. I definitely love the idea of being around them before I become their head coach at high school. It’s a good way for them to know me and know what to expect.”

PCVS 14s Roster
Meadow Becker
Carolina Castillo
Landry Edwards
Grace Lauer
Sydney Metcalf
Karla Olquin
Mireya Roman
Sydney Waldman

14s Schedule
Jan. 23, SAVL Ice Breaker, Hendersonville
Feb. 6, SAVL Mizuno Challenge, Columbia, S.C.
March 5, SAVL Spring Madness, Columbia, S.C.
April 2, SAVL Southeastern Showdown, Columbia, S.C.
April 16-17, SAVL League Championship, Spartanburg, S.C.

PCVC 13s Roster
Marilyn Castillo
Rollins Carter
Rachael Davis
Kristen Hall
Scout Harmon
Kylee Mullis
Marissa Twitty

13s Schedule
Feb. 6, SAVL Mizuno Challenge, Columbia, S.C.
Feb. 20, SAVL Alliance Classic, Spartanburg, S.C.
March 5, SAVL Spring Madness, Columbia, S.C.
March 19-20, Dixie Classic AAU Super Regional, Spartanburg, S.C.
April 16-17, SAVL League Championship, Spartanburg, S.C.

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