By: Ayamei Her
Alyssa Ramos is on Highland’s varsity volleyball team. The position she plays is libero which she says “I honestly love playing libero I didn’t think I would but it feels right and I feel like I have more control over both the game and the ball.” Alyssa says it fits her because she’s good at defense, running the back court, and she isn’t the tallest or the most aggressive on the team. Being on the volleyball team is about being committed, being open to own up to your mistakes, and wanting to fix them.
Getting on the team isn’t always an easy process. Alyssa was on the varsity team last year but that doesn’t mean her spot this year was guaranteed; she still fought to keep her spot and to show that she deserved to keep it and stay on varsity. Everyone tries out for the team all together.
There’s 5 days of tryouts and boot camp was everyday from 9-2 with a lunch break. During the boot camp, they broke down the skills, did conditioning to see who could keep up, and practiced passing and serving. The boot camp also included seeing how you could play defense and offense. It was about who deserved a spot on the teams, but it’s not just about how you play it’s also about your attitude and mindset.
Most of the team has been playing together for a long time. Some players have more experience than others because they play club volleyball which is also the reason why not everyone on the team is going at the same pace or playing on the same level.
Playing volleyball is mostly about having fun, but it’s also “A game of mistakes,” which is how Alyssa Ramos described it. To prepare for games they study the other team’s and their players to see their weakest and strongest players and play accordingly.
Last year, the Highland varsity volleyball team was state bound. Alyssa says it was scary and didn’t realize it was the real deal until they placed 1st in the conference. She also adds that it was an amazing experience that was incredibly fun.
I asked Alyssa what her words of inspiration were to help young girls stay motivated and continue on with volleyball, and she said, “If you really want a spot on the team you have to go out and show them what you’re capable of and if you get the spot, show them that you earned it. Everyone makes mistakes, volleyball is a game of mistakes. You have to have the right mindset for the game and practices. Give it your all even in practice.”