DOVER, Del. - On several occasions this fall, the Wesley College Volleyball team would travel down the road to Holy Cross School to practice in their gym while Wentworth Gym was in use. This spring, a pair of Wolverines are giving back by coaching recereational volleyball at Holy Cross.
Rising senior Beth Schlecker and rising junior Codi Ziolkowski have volunteered their time to take on a major project, co-coaching one of the teams in Holy Cross' under-18 volleyball league. "It made sense and felt right giving back to Holy Cross since we practiced there so many times this fall," said Ziolkowski.
The pair have took the position on a suggestion from Wesley Head Coach Lindsay Miller. It wasn't as easy as it looked though, "Our first practice was kind of rough," said Schlecker, "We went in without much of a plan, but we learned quickly that we had to come prepared to practice as coaches."
Since that first practice, the pair of Wolverines have taken a lot from the experience: "We've learned a lot about coaching," said Schlecker. "You get to see a different aspect from the sideline. I think its given us a lot more respect for the position." Ziolkowski added, "The biggest thing we've learned is how to keep a practice going, targeting individual skills while keeping the whole team engaged."
Codi is an education major at Wesley and said that the experience with coaching has lent itself to her studies and could help her in the future, "I think coaching definitely lends itself to teaching. It has allowed me to take things from education classes and instill them on the court. I think I can take some things from coaching and translate them to the classroom as well."
The pair have coached their team in several games throughout the season and have seen marked improvement in their young players. "We have only one boy on the team, and he was super shy at first," said Schlecker, "But as the season has gone on, he's come out of his shell and even stepped in to a sort of leadership role. It's great to see all our kids grow as people and as players."
Both Beth and Codi agreed that the experience has been a positive one so far, and something they could see themselves continuing in the future. "I think it's extremely important to give back to the community, to get outside of the bubble that is Wesley."
Schlecker and Ziolkowski will both return to lead the Wolverines in the fall of 2016.