Volleyball notebook: Dreiling‘s eye for talent should help Titans
During the South girls basketball team’s run to the 2013 Class 6A title, assistant coach Heidi Dreiling made mental notes about Madison Northcutt, Ericka Mattingly and Kendrian Elliott.
Mental notes about what they could do for the Titans volleyball team.
“You know as an athlete what they’re capable of,” said Dreiling, the South volleyball coach. “You know them better because you spend so much more time with them, but you also know what they can do.
“Seeing Madison play basketball, I asked, ‘why aren’t you playing volleyball?’ You can tell they can bring so many other things to the court that you may not have seen if they didn’t play another sport.”
Northcutt, a senior who missed the 2012 volleyball season and the first month of the basketball season after transferring from North, quickly became a player Dreiling could count on.
“You can put her in any type of situation, and she can thrive,” Dreiling said. “Set her up, back-row attacking, she’s defensive minded, being able to dig hard hits and get in position to read the hitter.
“She’s one of those playes you always want to have on the court.”
Mattingly, a sophomore who also is a standout track athlete, is a setter and hitter. Dreiling noted her desire to win, as well as her athleticism.
Elliott, a 6-foot-2 sophomore, plays middle and outside, wherever South needs her to hit from.
But what this trio brings that is as important as their skill is they know how to win. South hasn’t had a winning record in the City League since 1994 when Steve Eck led the Titans to a 14-2 record in the CL.
“Anytime you have kids who know what it’s like to win, they can step up into the leadership role and take control,” Dreiling said. “If you’re used to losing, you don’t know how to win. It’s hard to do if you’ve never had success, never tasted it.
“It’s important to have those who know what it feels like and carry that intensity and bring it together. It helps get everyone on board with the goals and what we’re trying to accomplish in the future.”
South, 1-1 in the City League, plays East and North at North Tuesday night.
Rose Hill’s schedule — Rose Hill coach Melissa Segovia isn’t the first Rockets volleyball coach to schedule tough opponents. But Segovia, in her third season, certainly has kept the tradition going.
“I don’t want to just have league matches,” said Segovia, whose team finished third in Class 4A in 2012. “It gives us a different look, different competition whenyou see programs that are so strong and successful.”
On Sept. 12, Rose Hill, which is in Class 4A, played at Maize, a Class 6A school, and against Andover Central, which is in 5A. On Sept. 14, Rose Hill was at the Valley Center tournament.
On Thursday, Rose Hill will play Garden Plain and Cheney, both 3A schools.
“The girls see a lot of these players in club all the time, and there’s a lot of respect for them,” Segovia said. “It’s nice to see someone different.”
And she doesn’t mind the occasional loss due to the Rockets’ difficult schedule. As long as her team learns from it.
“The last two years we’ve gotten to play Blue Valley West and then Blue Valley North. We were defeated by both those teams, but it made us better. It made us look at different things, things thast we need to look at and improve,” she said.