Hello Friends of Hamilton Volleyball,
Our season just ended and it’s hard to believe how fast it went. Although, we did not finish with the record that we wanted I believe our season is defined by more than our wins and losses.
The team worked hard all season and improved a lot! We intentionally put together a challenging schedule, which really paid off as the girls were hitting harder, moving faster and playing smarter as the season progressed. As we work towards building a stronger Hamilton volleyball team we will always strive to challenge ourselves further.
Another benefit of our challenging schedule is that the girls were battle tested and under the pressure created strong bonds with one another. The bus rides were great times with singing (“Some Nights” by FUN became our unofficial anthem), movies, games and just generally getting to know one another better. Never before have I worked with a team that got along so well or bonded so quickly. It’s hard to believe we were only together for 2 short months.
We graduate only two seniors, which means a great core of our team will be returning. The girls are enthusiastic for another season together. Although all out of season work is done on an optional basis many of the girls are already working hard in the gym to prepare for next season. It is incredible that they have their eyes on the prize so early and will definitely pay off in a big way once we can all work together again.
I also want to take a moment to thank our two seniors, Ally Martella and Amanda Cohen. They were a part of my first recruiting class at Hamilton. I was hired in late May so I was late in the recruiting cycle. I worried about our chances of getting anyone to come. I was a new coach, relatively untested, but eager to help build the Hamilton program. I hoped that the thick stack of recruiting letters on my desk when I arrived still contained some athletes that had not yet decided where to go. It was nerve racking!
I first found Amanda Cohen’s letter in that big stack and enthusiastically reached out to her knowing she would be able to help us. I was so relieved when she agreed to come to Hamilton in Early Decision and with that I had my first recruit as a head coach! Amanda has been a tireless worker and supporter of Hamilton Volleyball. She cares deeply for the program and the team. One of my favorite Amanda quotes is, “Every time I put on my jersey that says “Hamilton” across the back I get goose bumps”. I think that beautifully sums up the kind of person and player she is.
Ally Martella came to us a bit later in the recruiting cycle. I remember when she first contacted me in December and was interested in meeting me on campus. I had little information about her other than she was a middle hitter and at that point we still really needed a middle hitter. I remember thinking she was funny and easy to talk to. She finally got her acceptance letter in March and I was so happy because we still needed a middle hitter. I had a lot riding on Ally’s decision and after an overnight (and some help from her neighbor…a Hamilton alum) she said, “Yes”. A wave of relief washed over me as I thought about the future of Hamilton volleyball and realized we had a balanced class of great athletes coming in. Ally has been a consummate positive force of energy for our team. Good times or bad you can always count on her for a smile and a laugh.
This senior class will always hold a special place in my heart. They will be missed.
Amanda Cohen and Ally Martella (middle) celebrate a point with teammates Brenna Corrigan (left) and Courtney Somerville (right)