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Topics/tags: Grinnell, short

Congrats to our Volleyball team [1] for an excellent regular season, including being unbeaten at home!

I’m glad that I’ve had the opportunity to teach some members of the team and I look forward to the opportunity to teach more. One of my favorite things about Grinnell is that we have so many talented students, and that I regularly have the opportunity to watch them demonstrate their talents, whether on the athletic field (or court), in the classroom, on the stage, or wherever.

I feel fortunate to have had the time to attend a few matches this year. I wish I’d had the time to attend more [2]. When I’ve been there, I’ve appreciated how well the team works together, how supportive the players are of each other, and the athleticism of the game [4].

I like to say that it’s clear that the return of a wonderful alum as an assistant coach this year is the primary reason for their success. But I know that many factors have contributed to their success. Coach Ragan ’12 has built a great culture on the team; when I watch, I appreciate seeing how he gives the players a chance to talk together during time-outs before he comes over to talk to them. I know that Coach Hutchison recruited strong players who are now 3rd years and seniors and who make a big difference. Ragan has clearly continued with successful recruiting. But I still think Labasan’s return has had an impact.

I hope that I’ll have the opportunity to see more matches. I won’t be at Friday’s semifinal match [5]. But I’m hopeful that they’ll win. I don’t know where or when the finals match will be. At worst, I guess there’s always next year. And I expect they’ll have a good group supporting them on Friday.

In any case, congratulations and good luck to a wonderful group of student athletes and their coaches.

[1] Should I say Women’s Volleyball? We don’t have a Men’s Volleyball team, so I think Volleyball suffices.

[2] For example, while I had hoped to see Saturday’s matches, the Swimming and Diving meet at Coe took precedence [3].

[3] More precisely, watching Middle Son dive took precedence.

[4] I’m amazed at how quickly the players react to the shots.

[5] See my earlier musing for what I’m doing this coming weekend.

Version 1.0 of 2019-11-04.