Volleying victories

Bulldog volleyball .500 thru eight games

Sophomore Nicole Malouhos and senior Stephanie Sikorski leap to block an incoming spike.
Sophomore Nicole Malouhos and senior Stephanie Sikorski leap to block an incoming spike. Photo by: Rebecca Snow | Photographer

The Ferris State volleyball team has been synonymous with success these past couple years, thanks in larger part to four seniors that recently graduated.

Though those graduates are gone, that doesn’t mean the remaining women can’t step up and take the reins. In a slower start than the 2015 season, the team has started off the year with a 4-4 record compared to last year’s 8-0 record through the first eight games.

With the fourth loss this season, the team has already exceeded the losses that 2015 took in total as their end-season record came to 33-3. Sophomore right-side hitter Hannah Guy understands the comparison but also believes the team can endure and improve.

“Obviously we lost some key players this past year, but we have some girls who have really stepped up and taken on the roles they were given,” Guy said. “We are consistently in the gym working hard and taking things day by day and working to be the best we can be.”

Guy also talked about the team’s philosophy that they hold whether they are in a slump or winning every game.

“We work really hard to play what we call, ‘Bulldog Volleyball’,” Guy said. “We have high standards and strive to keep our legacy alive. It does not matter who is playing on the other side of the net, we play with grit and leave everything on the floor knowing that by the end of the game, regardless of the outcome, we walk off the court with satisfaction knowing we gave everything we had.”

Ferris volleyball lost key players in Megan Vander Meer, who last year won the Dean Davenport Bulldog of the Year Award. Another key player gone but not forgotten was Alexis Huntey who claimed the Willie Bouyer Leadership Award.

The squad is left with only three new seniors to take over and lead the team this season, but many of the younger ladies have shown promise in the past. One of those seniors is setter Stephanie Sikorski.

“Our team has worked extremely hard and I have no doubt that we can be our own great team,” Sikorski said. “Yes, we did not come out with a ton of wins off the bat, but we hung with some of the top teams in the nation. The season has just begun, and this team has so much to accomplish this year, all of which takes hard work, time and experience.”

The one value that Guy believes keeps these Lady Dawgs close through thick and thin, winning or losing—relationships.

“One of our team values is strong team and friend relationships, so we really try implementing that into game play,” Guy said. “We are really close off the court, and that helps being positive and purposeful in what we say on the court as well.”

Ferris State volleyball will be serving up some more action on the road on Friday, Sept. 16, at 7 p.m. when they head to Northwood to face the Timberwolves.