The Nevada Cubs volleyball team had a very successful year even after getting bumped up to 4A. Led by first year head coach Lori Stephenson, the team went 29-14 overall and 8-0 in the conference, winning the Heart of Iowa Conference once again and also making it back to the State Tournament. Lori said, “I thought the season went very well. We had some setbacks with injuries that caused a lot of shuffling and realigning of players, but the girls really worked hard through the adjustments.”
“We won the conference title, and I think that surprised North Polk, Gilbert and South Hamilton. Each of those schools took a game from us in the respective matches, but I don’t think any of those teams would have predicted we’d win. That puts Nevada at five conference championships in a row, so that’s a huge legacy this team got to be a part of. We also made it to the state tournament despite losing Chloe Davis to a knee injury in the regional semifinals. We also had girls set several career and season records.” Lori Stephenson noted. These were just a few highlights from a very successful season.
Lori was very impressed with the girls as they got better over the season. Lori said “We came into the season with just a few kids with varsity experience and just a few that had even had varsity practice experience. To go from that to a conference title and a trip to the state tournament shows that the girls improved individually and really played well as a team.”
They had goals in the beginning of the season and that was to win the conference and to go to the State Tournament, they definitely achieved both of their goals.
Lori Stephenson first year was very successful, and sheenjoyed every minute of it “The seniors were the first group I coached here in Nevada, so it was great to be a part of their final season. They provided such leadership that it was a pretty nice transition from JV to varsity coach this year. The team really benefited from their skills and their expectations.”
Article by Jack Henry.
I spoke with Mrs. Gray, one of the 7th grade volleyball coaches, about this fall’s season, and she only had good things to say about the team.
Mrs. Gray said that the season was a lot of fun. She said that it went well and everyone improved. Over the season, the girls improved a lot on serving and passing. Knowledge of the game also grew a lot over the season.
When I asked her about some improvements the team could still make, she responded with, “Everything!” She didn’t say this in a mean way, she just knew that the girls were still new to the game, so there was still a lot of room for improvement. Mrs. Gray said that she didn’t care about wins and losses, but she knew that there was a pretty even split between them.
She said she cared more about the improvement of the team. Every kid that went out improved, whether it was serving, hitting, or communicating with each other, everyone improved in something. The most impressive win for this team was the win the A team had against Roland story. It was impressive because Roland Story is a really good team, so to beat them is a big accomplishment.
One high point for the team was when one girl hit an overhand serve over the net for the first time in a game. She wasn’t able to do it before, but she worked hard in practice and made it happen, which was a good example for the team.
Overall, this team made a ton of improvements over the season, which is what the coaches wanted.
Article by Hudson Vermillion.
The middle school volleyball team almost every year has been pretty good. They usually win more than they lose, and coaches say that the team always improves a lot throughout the season. This year was just more of the same for middle school volleyball at Nevada Middle School.
I talked with Mallory Kane, one of the volleyball coaches for 8th grade. When I asked her how the season went as a whole, she said that it went very well. The girls improved a lot, which is what she was hoping for. Some improvements the team made, according to Miss Kane, were passing, communication on the court, and team unity.
Towards the end of the season, the team played other teams that they lost to earlier in the season. The second time around however, Nevada won these games. This made the coaches and the team all together very proud of what they had done over the season.
One of the things that the team got good at over the season was passing, but Miss Kane still said, “We can always improve on passing!”
She didn’t know the team’s record overall, but she did know that they had won more games than they lost. Twenty seven girls went out for 8th grade volleyball, but she said that all of them improved.
When I asked Miss Kane about what her goals for next season where, she just wanted to set the groundwork for the younger volleyball players so that they could be ready for high school volleyball.
Article by Hudson Vermillion.
The varsity volleyball team competed in a tournament in Bettendorf on Saturday, October 8th.
Nevada recorded two wins against Rock Island(Illinois) and Muscatine. They also had four losses to teams including Ankeny, Iowa City, Clinton, and Bettendorf.
"Saturday was a tough day for us. We were missing Hattie Rhodes due to State Marching Band and had to move people into different roles,” said Coach Stephenson. “Playing with a different lineup lets other people play and makes our push court a little deeper/more experienced, but it takes a while to get the kinks worked out of a new rotation.”
Skye Borton was moved to the middle in Hattie's absence and really did a nice job. “She's super dynamic and jumps well, so she covered the spot pretty well.” said Stephenson. Maddie Thompson also moved up from her usual JV spot to play Skye's right side. “Maddie did a nice job of bettering the balls that were set her way and really stepped up to play some good defense,” said Coach Lori Stephenson.
Kacie Rewerts had a great day for Nevada with only one hitting error on the entire day. Amanda Fortmann also played well and had a perfect serving day throughout the tournament. The five seniors, Borton, Abby Stephenson, Gill Tupper, Kelsey Wiederien, and Chloe Davis continued to provide solid play and court leadership.
The Cubs now have 2 weeks of practice before they play their first regional game. They have a first round bye, then will face the winner of the Bondurant-Farrar/Perry game (October 19) at home on Tuesday, October 25.
Article by James Carsrud.
The varsity volleyball team finished their undefeated conference season with a 3-1 win over North Polk Thursday night in Alleman.
"I was really proud of the team effort," said Coach Lori Stephenson. "We always concentrate on keeping our composure and having good ball control, and those two things really made a big difference."
Nevada won game one 25-16. North Polk took game two 22-25.
"North Polk had a lot of errors in game one, but we knew it wouldn't be that lopsided the rest of the match, " said Stephenson. "They cleaned up a lot of their errors in game two, and subsequently forced us to make more mistakes."
But Nevada shook off the loss and won games three and four by slim margins: 25-21 and 25-22.
"We had 88 digs in the match and had several extended rallies," said Stephenson. "I don't think North Polk is used to a team with a defense like ours. And then we were keeping the ball in system more than they were. It was just hard for them to use their big hitters as much as they usually do."
The Cubs travel to Bettendorf on Saturday, then have about two weeks to prepare for their first regional game on October 25.
Nevada’s varsity volleyball team traveled to Waverly last Saturday to compete in the Waverly-Shellrock GoHawk Tournament.
“The Waverly tournament always gives us a pretty good test. There are some really good, rated teams from a variety of classes, so it gives us a good chance for a late season assessment” Coach Lori Stephenson said.
The Cubs kicked off the day by playing Crestwood (25-13, 25-17), then played Beckman Dyersville (25-15, 20-25, 10-15), Solon (21-14, 21-15), Mount Vernon (17-21, 12-21), Crestwood (21-15, 21-13) and lastly Beckman Dyersville again and went (21-9, 13-21, 8-15).
“We lost two matches to Dyersville Beckman. We won the first game of the match both times, but just couldn't play consistent enough to win the matches. As always with losses like that, we'll reevaluate and work on some things so that we can play more consistently against teams that push us.”
The Cubs also came across a couple of injuries during the day. With the help of Skye Borton transitioning to an outside hitter and Madison Thompson playing some quality varsity minutes on the right side, the Cubs went 3-3 for the day.
The Cubs will have a home game this Tuesday against Greene County. It will also be Senior Night.
Article by Claire Ausman.
The volleyball team swept all three matches (9/JV/Varsity) with the PCM Mustangs Tuesday night in Monroe.
The varsity girls won their games with scores of 25-9, 25-10, and 25-8.
"They just couldn't handle our serving," said Coach Lori Stephenson. "Chloe Davis had long serving runs in games 2 and 3, and Abby Stephenson had a long run in game 1. In game 3 alone, Chloe had 3 aces and PCM made six unforced errors while she was serving. We were up 15 points before they scored."
It was a big night for stats for the Cubs. The team made 73/75 serves and had a hitting efficiency of .341.
"We only had nine hitting errors on the night," said Stephenson. "The girls are passing really well right now, and it shows up in our kill efficiency. When we can record 39 digs on a team that doesn't have a lot of offense, it just means we are really controlling all parts of the game. I am really proud of the way the girls communicate and play together. We have a pretty good team chemistry, and it shows in the way we play."
The Cubs travel to the Waverly Tournament this week and will finish conference play against Greene County and North Polk next week.
Nevada Beat the Gilbert Tigers 3-1 on Tuesday, September 20.
Coach Stephenson said “The Gilbert game was a great test for us here at the mid point of our season. The girls went into the night with a lot of confidence. They had been practicing well and had been working on playing smart volleyball. They were able to take advantage of some of Gilbert's weak spots, and they really held their composure during the entire match.”
The dig leaders of the game were Kelsey Wiederien with 24, and Abby Stephenson with 22.
Hitting Efficiency leaders were Skye Borton - 7/2 out of 16 (.313), Gill Tupper - 7/2 out of 13 (.385), and Kacie Rewerts - 10/5 out of 22 (.227).
Nevada, as a team, also had an outstanding game of serving, only missing 2 out of 102 serves (98%).
Nevada hosts their home tournament this Saturday, September 24.
Article by Annie Storvick.
Nevada’s volleyball team traveled to CMB last night. The varsity team went 3-0 with the scores being 25-9, 25-11, 25-11. Coach Lori Stephenson thought they really surprised CMB with how well they covered the court and recovered errant balls.
The whole team played well, but Kacie Rewerts, Abby Stephenson, and Kelsey Wiederien had really big nights. Kacie Rewerts had eight kills and 7 blocks. Abby Stephenson contributed with 12 kills, 14 digs, three blocks, and no service errors. Kelsey Wiederien pitched in 17 digs and also had no service errors.
“Our serving really improved from Tuesday night. We had only two errors on the night, so we served over 97% as a team,” said Coach Stephenson.
“Our offense did well last night, but it was really a great defensive effort. Kacie really shut down their main hitter and gave us some great blocks,” Coach Stephenson said.
Nevada will play Gilbert at home next Tuesday night.
Article by Claire Ausman.
The Cubs defeated the South Hamilton Hawks 3- 1 Tuesday night at home.
The Cubs had a good serving night with Chloe Davis, Abby Stephenson, and Kelsey Wiederien all serving without a error. Those same three girls had 20 or more dig; Davis with 20, Stephenson with 20, and Wiederien with 21. Abby Stephenson had a good offensive night with 24 kills, and Gill Tupper had 42 assists.
After the game Coach Lori Stephenson had this to say:
“I think we underestimated South Hamilton. They had scouted us and knew our patterns. They are athletic and have some big players, so it was a good contest for us.
I was really proud of the girls. They kept their composure the whole night, and we won because we played our game the entire night and forced them to play cautiously. Their caution then led to mistakes, and we were able to capitalize on them not being in their normal game.”
Article by Grant Huckvale.