Men’s volleyball season comes to an end


Bri Berndt

Junior right side hitter Josh Van Essen and sophomore middle blocker Ben Schultz block another one of the opposing team’s balls on March 30 at the Carver Center.

Abhib Lal Amatya

The Augustana men’s volleyball season ended on April 1 with a home match against Millikin. The Vikings won seven out of the 24 games played throughout their season that lasted from mid-January to beginning of April. 

The team said that they failed to reach their goals from the season. Sophomore setter Matthew Degnan thinks that the team could not meet the expectations they had set. 

“We had kind of a rough season, but I think we have grown a lot score-wise. We definitely did not meet our goals. We were shooting for half wins and losses but we did not get close,” Degnan said. 

Captain of the team and sophomore, Max Sellers, also has a similar view towards how the season went. 

“It’s kind of sad, especially since we had like a little higher hopes at the start of the season, but it just didn’t fall through,” Sellers said. 

Given that eight players from the team graduated after playing well the previous season, they had to find replacements and come back up. The team only had two juniors, and the rest were sophomores and first-years. First-year middle hitter Jacob Spicer acknowledges this as one of the reasons contributing to the rough season. 

“We were starting to grow as the season began. We were like such a new team and we had so much stuff to get down and we were all new to each other,” Spicer said. 

Similarly, Degnan and Sellers also have similar thoughts towards having inexperienced new faces in the team. 

“We did not really know how to work together as a team yet. Except for Max, the entire starting six were all new to playing volleyball at a deeper level. So, it was just like figuring out how to play at that level,” Degnan said. 

Moving forward, the team said they are going to come up with new strategies, set new goals, forget the rough past while still taking away plenty to learn from so that the new season ahead is better. 

Sellers said he thinks that the team has learned a lot from this season which they will be using to make improvements next season. He is also very excited about the new recruits.

“I know we are getting a lot of good recruits. And the guys we got are really great, and we have built such good team chemistry. We just need to put it on the court. I am just hoping for more during pre-season and [to be] top four [in the] CCIW just like our goal was this season,” Sellers said.

Degnan said he also believes in not giving up. He hopes to start out again but better this time with the same people. Similarly, Spicer hopes to work on being more aggressive, energetic and consistent. 

“I think that one important thing that we can focus on next year is being very aggressive. And I think that we can do that very well in certain times, but next year, I think we need to focus on doing it all the time. If we do it all the time, I think we can win,” Spicer said. 

As the captain of the team, Sellers has much more responsibilities on his shoulders. He said he hopes to be a better leader, be an example and source of inspiration for other players. 

“My goal is to improve each and every person because I have the experience, and I know I can help out people and keep having a positive attitude,” Sellers said.