Beulah Volleyball preview

Published 12:01 pm Wednesday, August 9, 2023

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Beulah’s volleyball team had their first practice on Tuesday, and they have been working hard all summer to prepare for the upcoming season. 

The team will not be very senior heavy, but it is not necessarily a young group. Beulah has just three seniors on the team, but there will be around eight juniors filling out the roster. 

Head Coach Allison Aikens is still early in the process of figuring out this year’s team. Aikens knows that this first week of practice will be important to improve the team’s fundamentals. 

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“Just kind of really looking for chemistry, and getting that core group together, and seeing which ones kind of work better in which rotations,” Aikens said. “Just seeing what they did this summer to improve, and just looking for that combination. You know, that winning combination you’re always looking for.” 

The Bobcats play in one of the tougher regions in 3A. Alabama Christian Academy eliminated Beulah in the area tournament last season. Beulah will be looking for revenge in that matchup this season. 

“We always want to play well, we always want to advance, and they’re the ones that put us out,” Aikens said. “So, that’s what we’re working for throughout the season. We face them a couple of time during the season, but we want that chance to win when it’s important at the end at the area tournament to hopefully be able to advance.” 

Last year’s state champion, Prattville Christian Academy, sat at the top of the region last season. 

That matchup during the regular season will be a measuring stick for where the Bobcats will be at the end of the season. 

“We’ve got a long way to go, and that’s our goal to get there,” Aikens said. “I’ve been very pleased with our girls. They’re very determined. They work hard, and they give it their all, and as long as we can keep doing that then that’s our goal is to get there and be able to compete individually [and] beat PCA.” 

Ashylnne Sluder, Madyson Snedigar, Aubryn Trammell, Elizabeth Hancock and Anna Gray will be some of the key leaders for Beulah this season. 

“Well, they’re kind of leaders on and off the court along with several others,” Aikens said. “When the game’s on the line, those are some of the ones that I want to put out there.” 

Trammell, Hancock and Gray are the only seniors on the team. Aikens said that the seniors have been good leaders and encouragers to the other girls, and that’s something that the players have taken seriously. 

“Not only showing them what to do, but showing them that it’s ok to fail,” Hancock said. 

Each of the five leaders on the team expressed how important it was to be there for the younger girls, and show them how fun the game can be. 

“You don’t want them to think that their mistakes affect how everybody looks at them,” Sluder said. “So, encouraging them to brush it off and be better, it’s very encouraging to them.” 

“Especially on the court when you make a mistake, and to show them to have good sportsmanship,” Trammel said. 

Snedigar and Sluder add a lot of size for the Bobcats. The two believe that this will give Beulah an advantage at the net, and they believe that it could affect the mentality of the teams they face this season. 

“We’re intimidating,” Snedigar said. 

Last season, Beulah was only able to play one game on their home floor due to renovations that were being done. With the renovations complete, the players are excited to play at home again, and they are ready to have their student section back. Aikens believes that having their home court back will help out in multiple ways. 

“It’s very important just to have that home field advantage, so to speak,” Aikens said. “Not only is this important, but so is their academics, and it was rough last year traveling so much and not being able to play in front of our home fans.” 

Traveling as much as Beulah did last season is hard for any team, but Aikens did say that the team had a great group of parents that traveled to watch the team play.