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Q&A WITH VAL MONTICUE

THE PHYSICS TEACHER ON HER
YEAR AS A VOLLEYBALL COACH

INTERVIEWED BY MAIA PETERSON
STAFF WRITER

Do you have any past experience with volleyball?

“My parents played volleyball when I was younger, and I would go help keep score and call lines, but I was too young to play. I have watched volleyball, I have scored volleyball, but I don’t have any experience playing on a formal team.”

What are your goals for the team?

“Improvement. I want them to be better players at the end of the season than they were in the beginning of the season. I am not worried about whether or not we win or lose any specific game as long as they are thinking about what they did and are figuring out ways to get better.”

How competitive would you describe the environment you create for your players?

“We have to have each others back. We have to work together. We have to communicate… whenever we play another team, we are testing our collaboration.”

How do you motivate your players?

“We do cheers; the cheers are super fun. We do a lot of skill building so that they can feel confident with the individual skills and also keeping the practices challenging enough to keep them interesting.”

What are your best memories so far?

“The best memory would probably be the game we played a few weeks ago. We didn’t have six players, so we played a scrimmage game of four-on-four to get the experience. Our players did a phenomenal job. They were so energetic and enthusiastic. We won two of the three games, and they really pulled together everything we had done in practice.”

Do you think you will continue to coach volleyball in future years?

“I would like to. The head coach keeps saying everybody has their first season, and it’s certainly been a learning experience. The players have better volleyball skills than I do, because they do more practicing, but as time goes on I will continue to learn and become more effective.”

If the girls were to take away one thing from this season what would you want it to be?

“Don’t be afraid of doing something you’re bad at. That is why I have a poster in my room that says, ‘Sucking at something is the first step to being sorta good at something.’”

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