Eagles sharpen skills in spring season

Competing on sand gave the Eagles a chance to sharpen their skills this spring. (Photo by Tom Hagerty, Polk State.)
Competing on sand gave the Eagles a chance to sharpen their skills this spring. (Photo by Tom Hagerty, Polk State.)

Polk State volleyball had a successful spring, with indoor and sand training throughout the semester.

Toward the end of March, the Eagles played in a tournament at the University of South Florida. This gave the team an opportunity to play four NCAA D1 teams (Jacksonville University, Florida Gulf Coast University, University of Central Florida, and University of North Florida). Polk State went 2 - 2 in the tournament.

"It was great chance for our players to be seen by four-year schools and an opportunity for the players to see that they can play at that level," said Head Coach German Del Valle.

"Also, later into the spring we had the opportunity to scrimmage at Rollins College, which gave our kids another great chance to play and compete at a higher level."

The Eagles also spent time this spring improving their skills in sand volleyball, an upcoming sport in the NCAA and NJCAA.

"We have a few athletes who have a sand volleyball background, while some of the others do not have as much experience," said Del Valle.

"We had a few matches that gave our players a chance to see if it will be something that they may pursue in the future."

The Eagles first played a sand tournament at Polk State with Webber International, Warner, Southeastern, and Eastern Florida.

"It was an enjoyable sand scrimmage with a few teams we do not have an opportunity to play indoors," said Del Valle.

Polk State's number-one pair, Nicky Pio and Kathya Garcia,  went undefeated on the day, while number-two pair Dominika Nemcova and Keisha Santana went 3-1.

In mid-March, the Eagles hosted State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota, which offered another chance to compete on sand.

Once again Pio and Garcia had a successful outing. Dominika Nemcova and Veronika Nemcova and number-three pair Aurora Alderman and Anilise Fitzi also played well throughout the day.

"Overall, we had a successful 2016-2017 season and made many strides with our volleyball program," said Del Valle.

"We broke many records this year and finished third at the national championship tournament."

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