Hitting the Beach: Beach Ball paying dividends for local athletes

Via VYPE

Originally Appeared on VYPE

IT'S A SPORT THAT FORCES YOU TO BE GOOD AT EVERYTHING. Every position. Every skill. Every portion of volleyball – hitting, serving, ball placement, communication and physical endurance – that usually takes six players to fully operate.

Instead, it is just you and one teammate, roaming a slightly smaller court. But the biggest difference is the fact that the hardwood floor that you would normally launch yourself off is replaced with the always shifting sand.

"Beach volleyball is extremely challenging," Goose Creek Memorial's Zoe Martinez, who first saw beach volleyball in a magazine when she was 10, said. "It tests all of your skills as a volleyball player."

Martinez and teammate Nadia Karabanoff of Barbers Hill accepted the challenging sport and qualified for the USAV Beach Nationals in California at a tournament in Galveston this past summer. This marked the third time Martinez has qualified for the national beach tournament.

Karabanoff, who is coming off a solid freshman season for the Eagles, is using her sand season to improve her indoor game, which she is hoping will pay off starting in August.

"The sprints, jumps and countless touches on the ball in the hot Texas sand have all taken part in preparing me for the upcoming fall season," Karabanoff said. "I feel that training in the sand not only elevates the physical skills of the game but also the mental. Working through my own mistakes and finding ways to correct them without the help of a coach develops me into an overall better player."


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VYPE

Originally Appeared on VYPE

Julia Faseler has seen it all on the volleyball court.

The Second Baptist School senior has been digging volleyballs at an elite level since middle school. She has seen the speed and power of the Class 6A game when she played varsity at state-ranked Pearland Dawson.

The libero moved to Second Baptist School entering her junior season and hit the ground running.

"I really wanted to get to a Christian-based school where the bible is implemented in what we do on and off the court," she said. "It's been a great experience for me personally. I wouldn't change a thing.

"Coach (Sue) Berg has been amazing," she said. "She's one-of-a-kind and is a tremendous motivator. I love playing for her."

Now a senior, Faseler has taken the baton as a team leader for a young team.

"It's been so fun this season," she said. "I've made so many friends here and have grown really close on the court. I've also learned so much on how to effectively lead, which is a great life skill.

"I've played defense my entire career and I love libero so I can control what we are doing on the back row."


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