National Spring Preview Series Admin
Thu, February 15, 2024 at 11:47 AM
This year, the St. Joseph Academy (SJA) boys volleyball team is kicking off their inaugural season with high hopes and a strong sense of determination. As a brand new program with no returning players, the team is ready to make their mark and start a legacy right out of the gate. In order to gain insight into what we can expect from the team this season, we had the opportunity to speak with Coach Ryan Hanson, who shared his thoughts on the team's goals, strengths and challenges. Coach Hanson's primary focus for the team this year is on growth, both individually and as a team. With a number of first-year players and a mix of club and high school experience, the team has a lot to learn. But according to Coach Hanson, the players are eager and excited for the opportunity to compete in CIF. This enthusiasm and desire to improve bodes well for the team's potential. One particular strength that Coach Hanson points out is the team's athleticism. With a good mix of freshmen and upperclassmen, as well as players who participate in other sports together, the team has a strong bond and familiarity with each other which will undoubtedly prove beneficial on the court. Additionally, the team's Catholic identity plays a role in their success, with the captains serving as leaders not only in the sport, but also in their prayer life. With only 95 students in the high school, the SJA community is close-knit and supportive, which Coach Hanson believes will be a valuable asset to the team. Practices and conditioning are not just about skill-building but also about building team camaraderie and unity. This is further reinforced by the team's shared faith and the belief that they are playing for a higher purpose. As a coach, Coach Hanson emphasizes the importance of accountability and showing genuine care for his players. He understands that teenage players need someone who can guide and correct them without breaking them down. And as a coach who has experience in coaching multiple sports, he brings a diverse range of knowledge and experiences to the team that will undoubtedly benefit the players. However, the team does have some significant challenges to overcome. With half of the team also participating in basketball and soccer - both of which are in the playoffs - the team has only a few weeks to prepare for their first game. Not to mention, a number of the players have no prior experience in volleyball, making the learning curve steep.