Mountain View volleyball in pursuit of excellence The Mesa Tribune | The Hometown Newspaper for the city of Mesa, AZ

Mountain View volleyball in pursuit of excellence

Mountain View volleyball in pursuit of excellence
Sports
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By Keenan O’Rourke
Tribune Contributing Writer

Unity, dedication and togetherness are three words commonly used by the Mountain View volleyball team to describe themselves as they pursue the ultimate goal of winning a state championship this season. 

“We are going to a state championship and nothing is going to stop us,” senior Ashley Reed said.

Now more than midway through the pandemic-shortened volleyball season, the Toros find themselves at 10-2 on the year and ranked No. 7 in the 6A Conference. They are currently the top-ranked program in all of Mesa, thanks to a commitment from every player to leave it all out on the floor.

The success, however, has not come easy.

Mountain View head coach Clark Fleming took over the program in 2018 with a goal of helping the team reach its highest potential. But he understood there needed to be a change in philosophy if he wanted to see those results on the floor.

“My first year as head coach we were really bad,” Fleming said. “We only won three to four matches. We really wanted to confront that feeling of, ‘we are not good enough.’

“My favorite part about these kids is that instead of trying to make every excuse, I had a group that acknowledged that we are not good enough and we needed to go put in work,” Fleming added.

The Toros spare no minute when it comes to improving their game.

Whether it’s practicing technique or studying film as a unit, the team invests
at least four hours a day to find ways to improve.

“At this point it seems pretty normal,” Reed said. “If we had a two-hour practice, I would be pretty disappointed.”

Reed believes her squad works harder than anybody else in the state. The team understands they are not the biggest or most physical, so they practice to their strengths as much as possible.

“A lot of teams are more physical than us, so they do not need to work nearly as hard,” Reed said. “We have a lot of great coaches that hold us accountable to that standard as well.”

Having players buy in to this commitment was natural since many have a long history together. A dedication to excellence transitions to chemistry and trust on the court.

“Since we have been together for quite a while now,” senior Brekyn Goodman said. “I would say it makes us stronger as a team that we can communicate effectively and believe in one another even when somebody makes a mistake on the floor.”

Mountain View faced Dobson on Thursday, Oct. 22 and will return to the floor Tuesday against Mesa before wrapping up the season on Nov. 3 against Basha.

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