The COVID-19 coronavirus has affected almost every Raider this semester, but for members of the Shippensburg University women’s volleyball team, it has most certainly been a struggle.
Following a stellar 26-win season, the SU women’s volleyball team is being challenged especially hard during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. With indoor sports having to overcome more obstacles than outdoor, the team has a long road ahead of it.
The squad has been in a state of limbo since July 15, when SU followed the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) guidelines and postponed all sporting events and fall championship seasons through Dec. 31.
Recently, SU athletes were permitted to resume a limited version of their countable athletically related activities (CARA). Team organized workouts that follow the CARA model are permitted even with no matches on the horizon.
Sophomore defensive specialist and libero Maria Lucas has noticed some changes to the team’s practice schedule.
“We are still able to have workouts every day,” Lucas said. “Two days of lifting and three days of conditioning a week, but we are not allowed to touch a volleyball yet, which has been hard.”
Lucas grew up with a volleyball in her hands as her mother, Megan Lucas, was an All-PSAC volleyball player at Clarion University.
Lucas’ mother also served as her volleyball coach through high school. With three sisters and a brother, Lucas is one sibling away from fielding a full-team volleyball squad.
Lucas said she is grateful for the opportunity to work out and improve as a team. She said that the team understands why workouts are restricted and all eyes are focused on the future.
The Raiders volleyball team members are hoping a spring season will allow all their hard work to pay off and prove their elite level of play on the court.
“We are still staying game ready for the spring,” Lucas said. She added that team members are taking the extra time to work on their chemistry and bonding.
For now, all Lucas and her teammates can do is remain ready and in shape. Until sports are given the all clear, the court in Heiges Field House will remain vacant.