Written By: Devin Garner
As the Fall 2020 season was postponed earlier in the summer, the St. Mary’s College of Maryland Women’s Volleyball team has had to find a way to stick together. Despite some of the players deciding to go fully remote this semester, they have still found a way to workout and bond. Taylor Wigglesworth (‘22) and Fatima Bouzid (‘22) have been key players for the team in years past and have had to find a way to adjust to having the season postponed.
Wigglesworth opted to go fully remote this semester. While going fully remote can come with challenges, she has handled it in stride. She stated, “Since I am off campus, it takes more effort to make sure that I am still connecting with my teammates.” To accommodate the players that are off campus, she remarked that the team has been holding bi-weekly Zoom meetings. While the zoom meetings have not been the same as being in-person, they still have given players an opportunity to connect and hang out with one another. As she states, “It’s really hard not being at school together since the volleyball team is my main group of friends, so I enjoy having the opportunity to connect over Zoom.”
In these difficult times, coaches have had to step in and keep their team together. When asking Bouzid of how the team’s head coach Kelly Martin has had an impact throughout this time, she argued that, “Coach Martin has done an awesome job by keeping us updated whenever she can and by being very understanding when things pop up during these odd times.” Experienced players have also had to take a bigger role in leading their younger teammates through this time. When asking Wigglesworth of how she has served as a mentor to her younger teammates, she stated, “When the pandemic began, we began weekly Facetimes with each freshman entering the program… It was the perfect opportunity to get to know each other better and give the freshman a chance to ask questions to ease any anxiety about the transition into college.”
While Bouzid acknowledges that the first practice had been pushed to Sept. 23, many of the players remain hopeful for a potential Spring season. Wigglesworth shared her excitement about the possibility of a Spring season by remarking, “We are very hopeful that we will be able to compete in the Spring. Although we do not want to get our hopes up… we are still staying focused.” Training comes with a lot of detail and hard work. As Wigglesworth argues about the efforts of the team, “We are continuing to work hard to make sure our bodies and minds will be ready to compete in the Spring if we are given the opportunity.”
Regardless of whether or not there is a Volleyball season in the Spring, the efforts and the preparation of the team have not gone unnoticed. As Bouzid explained, “I am just so proud of everyone for adapting to this situation and still working hard even though we cannot compete at this moment.” When the team does get back in action, be sure to go out to the Michael P. O’Brien Athletic Center to support the hard work put in by the St. Mary’s Volleyball program.