By Isabelle Flener
Lewis and Clark Community College boasts a vibrant sports scene, and one of the standout teams in action right now is the Women’s Volleyball team. Comprising 14 enthusiastic and skilled athletes, they’re united by their passion for volleyball and their drive to succeed on the court. A notable recent victory occurred on Thursday, October 19th when they faced off against Missouri Baptist University, triumphing after an intense four-round match.
During October, the team proudly sports bright pink uniforms to raise awareness for breast cancer, showing their commitment to sports and a great cause.
Leading the team is Coach Jim Hunstein, who, after previously coaching LC’s volleyball team in 2012, has returned to guide the team to success once again. This marks his 6th non-consecutive year as the coach at Lewis and Clark. He also served as the Assistant Coach for Washington University in St. Louis for four years, gaining valuable experience in coaching both volleyball and tennis, which he has been passionate about throughout his life.
“In 2012, I was the Assistant Coach for Washington University in St. Louis for 4 years,” said Hunstein. “This opportunity presented itself, with part of the position coaching tennis as well. I have played both sports all my life, so it was a natural fit for me.”
While the team has faced more losses than wins this year, the recent win against Missouri Baptist University was a thrilling moment for the team and its supporters.
“Watching players develop is the most rewarding aspect of being a coach. To see them become even stronger women than they were coming in. Seeing their eyes light up when they make a great play that they didn’t know they could make. Helping a teammate succeed. The girls are great about helping each other get better and be successful,” said Hunstein, extremely proud of the team and their development.
Every player on the team has had their moments in the spotlight, but Haris Legendre, an outside hitter, has truly stood out. In her first year playing for Lewis and Clark, she is currently ranked 32nd in hitting and 42nd in kills in the country.
“I love all of the girls; we are all from different places and we have never met each other,” said Legendre. “So, getting to play together is super cool. We all get along well and have great coaches. It makes the experience fun.”
Beyond the wins and losses, athletes can meet student-athletes in other sports, expanding their social circles.
“Playing a sport here at LC brings me to meet a lot more people, especially those who play other sports. I feel like if I were just here as a student, I would not talk to anyone. Getting to have these friends has been amazing,” said Legendre.
These athletes, including Legendre, serve as role models for younger players, demonstrating that with determination and a positive attitude, it is possible to achieve their goals in sports.
“Don’t give up, and always have fun,” says Legendre. “Volleyball is a great sport; it brings people together. It is truly a team sport. Never give up and keep on playing.”
The next step for the Women’s Volleyball team is gearing up for two more home games before the regional competitions.