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Mustang varsity volleyball team, are, from left to right: Kelly Heck, Katey Lutz, Jackie Pierson, Kaylee Fisher, Kristen White, Tanyssa Olafson, Coach Chelsey Elhard, Bree Lindley, Rachel Chaffin and Megan Halverson.

Bump, Set, Spike Win! Goodbye

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sports Bemidji,Minnesota 56619
Bemidji Pioneer
Bump, Set, Spike Win! Goodbye
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

The Mustang Varsity team is having a good outlook on their season so far. With a record of four wins and five losses, most would call that a decent mid-season record. With three of our 2010-2011 season starters leaving the team for various reasons and a new coach, the season was looking bleak for the Mustangs at first.


Coach Chelsey Elhard is the newest addition to the team. With the departure of our former Coach Shannon Avenson, the Mustangs were excited but devastated. We were not confident we could find another coach as driven and committed.

When Coach Chelsey first stepped into the gymnasium of that second day of practice (she had to miss the first day of practice for medical emergency reasons), she had the look of determination about her face.

With the first two weeks of conditioning and basic skills training on her mind, the team couldn't help but think that this was going to be an interesting season for the simple fact that we were not used to this coaching style.

Coach Shannon Avenson would take the coaching route of practicing specific areas and only conditioning every other day.

For the first two weeks of practice, we ran a mile and a half a day to two miles a day first thing in the morning, then followed with practicing basic skills.

With the first game on the way, I was getting worried that we were not prepared enough for the game and Cass Lake was going to go into the game stronger and more prepared then we were.

The Cass Lake game turned out that the Mustangs fought hard and almost beat the Panthers. We played five games and all the matches were close. We never gave up until that final whistle was blown.

This surprised me. I was so proud of the team at that moment. Even though we lost, I felt as though we were indestructible. Coach Chelsey had made us so close together as a team that we were willing to help each other.

This bond was new and I had never seen it before. We had formed a special friendship with everyone and learned together as a team from the fundamentals all the way to the more advanced skills.

We took that bond and ran with it. We won games easily against some teams and for others we put up a good fight. What coach could ask for more than to have a team that works hard together and does not quit until that whistle blows the final time?

The Mustangs have had their rough patches when it is hard to keep our heads up and play through the pain, but after the game is done Coach Chelsey will always give a great pep talk to liven our spirits.

Since it's my senior year, it is going to be especially difficult for me to leave this team behind. I have formed a special bond with each one of the girl,s and I can not thank you girls enough for giving me one of the best, most memorable seasons I've ever played.

Katey Lutz and Kelly Heck, you girls always know how to lighten the spirits on the court and have a positive attitude no matter the score. Good luck next year!

Jackie Pierson, Teresa Weidenborner, Bree Lindley and Sadie Fraley, you girls have one of the best attitudes no matter how much you get to play or how well you play. You four have truly motivated me to keep my game going through it all. Keep up the great work. You make the team fun!

Tanyssa Olafson and Kaylee Fisher, I have formed a special bond with both you two. Both of you are like sisters to me, there for me no matter what the problem may be. I can't thank you enough for all that you have done for me. You guys rock and are amazing players. I can't wait to come back next year and watch you rock it up!

And to my fellow seniors Rachel Chaffin and Kristen White, it has been a blast growing up and learning how to become better players with you two. You two are such great sports and motivate me to push myself to do my very best. I hope to play you in the near future in college.

This has been one of the most successful years of volleyball I have played in many years. Thank you to all the fans who come to home games and a special thank you to all the fans who are devoted enough to drive to away games. Lets keep the wins coming girls and finish strong. Bump! Set! Spike! WIN!

Pioneer staff reports