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2009 USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships in Miami

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2009 USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships in Miami

Posted on 06 July 2009 by Chuck Rey

low country volleyball club nationals 300x213 2009 USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships in Miami volleyball

I purchased a last minute ticket for $350 from Minneapolis to Miami, quite a deal, but I can only imagine the additional expense for those teams traveling from the west coast, especially in today’s economy.

I had a great time watching my little club that could, Low Country Volleyball Club that has a total of 3 teams in the entire club (not three teams per age group like many of the teams they faced).  The team won its region for the second straight season in the 18s age group and played in the National division (the middle division) at the USA Volleyball National Championships.  From the win/loss column, you might think the team did not play well, but overall, Low Country had their best ever showing at Nationals in the 18s age group.  I’m proud of their accomplishments icon smile 2009 USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championships in Miami volleyball

As always, it was a joy to watch the teams from larger clubs and larger metropolitan areas, especially the Minnesota teams, as I have some familiarity with the players that will be moving on to the University of Minnesota.  The Northern Lights 17s team with Tori Dixon and Ashley Whittman had a nice tournament as well as Minnesota Select’s 18s team with Katherine Harms.  I never did get a chance to watch Briana Haugen, as our schedule always seemed to conflict.  All I can say is the University of Minnesota will be stacked with great talent over the coming years.  I look forward to watching them!

As for the tournament overall, I felt as if many of the players in the upper age groups (17s and 18s) played emotionless.  It seemed as if the players are just going through the motions, as if they have to be there to play.  Many of the players looked burned out.  These girls play all year long.  They don’t have a break from volleyball.  I remember when I played indoor, I would get bored with it, but just as the indoor season ended, outdoor would come around and I could play on North Avenue Beach in Chicago.  The mix from indoor to outdoor really kept my interest.  Players today don’t have time to switch from indoor to outdoor or have time to miss the game.

Many of these players just played at AAUs in Orlando a couple weeks ago, followed-up by USAV Nationals or JVDA Championships.  Next these players will visit camps to “try-out” for their respective colleges of choice.   After camps, high school practices begin followed by the high school season.  The never ending volleyball cycle then turns over again, as the high school season is immediately followed-up by club tryouts, then the club season…all the way until July.  Its too much.  Players are coming into college with over-use injuries and need surgery after their first season.  Many players play in pain or are simply burned out.

I was under the impression that part of the reason for the inception of the JVDA was to help limit playing time.  The JVDA could make a great impact into the schedule of these players if they moved their championship to May, but unfortunately, that has yet to happen.

Anyway, I always enjoy watching the Hawaii teams play.  They prove that height doesn’t matter.  And the 12 year old teams are always fun.  Some of the players on those teams are so advanced already.  The really good 12 year old teams look like they could step out onto the court with some of the 16 year old teams and hold their own.

Even though Miami must have been quite an expense for some, it was a great venue to host a tournament.  I was able to get down to South Beach between matches and catch a few outdoor games with some old friends.  As much as the game changes, it still seems to be the same.

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Comparing Penn State and Low Country Volleyball Club

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Comparing Penn State and Low Country Volleyball Club

Posted on 07 April 2009 by Chuck Rey

In my previous blog, I mentioned Low Country Volleyball Club’s 18s Team winning the 18 Open Division of the USAV Palmetto Region to qualify the team for Nationals in Miami. I received the stats from the team’s championship weekend (we have a parent keep stats), and just for fun icon wink Comparing Penn State and Low Country Volleyball Club volleyball compared them with the offensive stats of the 2008 Final Four Teams: Penn State, Stanford, Nebraska, and Texas. I was testing a coaching theory of IPE (read my What is IPE blog if you are unfamiliar with this concept). Here are my findings: Continue Reading

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Play the Game to Teach the Game

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Play the Game to Teach the Game

Posted on 06 April 2009 by Chuck Rey

usav palmetto region champions 18s Play the Game to Teach the Game volleyballIt’s the little club that could. Low Country Volleyball Club with a total of 3 teams in the entire club, won the 18 Open Division of the USAV Palmetto Region Championship this past weekend in Charlotte. This is the second year in a row the team won the region to advance to the USAV Nationals, held in Miami this July. I’m proud to say I coached at this club a number of years ago and it was a joy watching many of the girls I once coached win the championship…again. A club of three teams. Continue Reading

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A Parent Letter about a Child Growing Through Volleyball :)

Posted on 25 March 2009 by Chuck Rey

The reason I am a volleyball coach…

LCV Club has been such a blessing for the whole [name withheld] family and we are so grateful to have had this experience. Chuck, I remember when our daughter was a freshman and you invited her to come to Big South with your team. We sat outside of the CNN Center and you talked to the team about your philosophy for that tournament. You told them to work hard, try jump serves, have fun and…you shared your story of life lessons. I knew you were correct about vb and all the lessons the girls would take from this sport to use throughout their lives. I wasn't sure what that would look like for our daughter, but I was excited about the possibilities ahead. I saw you inspire her as you helped her define her goals, she embraced what you said and was so grateful that you believed in her enough to share your thoughts. I have seen her work on this sport all through these years and deep inside was that passion to prove you right for believing in her. You challenged her with the proper effort, diet, commitment and focus, her dreams could become a reality, and now that opportunity awaits her, simple amazing!!!

This player is now going on to play in college. Awesome! icon smile A Parent Letter about a Child Growing Through Volleyball :) volleyball Teaching Life Lessons Through Volleyball

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The Challenge of Coaching at Small Clubs – Practice and Tournaments

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The Challenge of Coaching at Small Clubs – Practice and Tournaments

Posted on 13 March 2009 by Chuck Rey

I received an email from a coach asking for feedback about players that miss practices and tournaments when part of a small club. In theory, the principle of missing practice and tournaments at a small or large club should be the same, but there are some unique instances that always spring-up. Following is my reply. Your feedback on this subject is appreciated too. Continue Reading

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Coach Chuck Rey is Assistant Coach at Miami University


Prior to this position, he was Assistant Coach at Winthrop University, the University of Minnesota and Georgia Southern University.

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