The 2017/2018 season is well under way for Banchory Volleyball Club and for the first time in some years the club has both a women’s and a men’s district league team.
Underpinning the women’s team is a keen squad of teenage girls; some have been with the club’s junior programme since primary school, while others have taken up the game more recently.
The ever-improving girls were ready for a challenge so a league team was the obvious next step, mixing in several of the adult players to back up the youthful potential with some canny experience.
The women have now played four league matches, against Aberdeen Ladies, VA Storm, Hazlehead and Aberdeen University, and while they have not yet secured a win, they are getting closer with every match and have impressed their more established opponents with their enthusiasm and teamwork.
Club coach Cory Amundrud is delighted with the team’s debut: “Right now we’re not worried about what the scoreboard shows, we’re focusing on improving our skills, movement and tactical awareness and the wins will eventually come our way.”
The girls also made up the Banchory Academy team at the recent Scottish Volleyball Association Schools Festival at Aberdeen Sports Village, where they met the SVA’s Lynne Beattie and Ben Pipes, Team GB’s team captains from the London 2012 Olympics, now both development officers with the SVA.
Meanwhile the men’s team, last season’s league runners-up, have made an emphatic start to the season by beating all of their first three opponents, Kamikaze Seaton II, Hazlehead and Aberdeen University, 3-0 .
Although the men are on dominant form, their team’s age profile is older than the women’s, and with one stalwart working overseas most of the time and three strong junior squad members now in their final school year, the men could do with reinforcement in time for next season.
Volleyball has a low profile in Scotland and the rest of the UK despite being one of the world’s most popular participation sports but Banchory are well in to their third decade of keeping volleyball on the local map and will celebrate a silver jubilee in 2018.
It is a true community club with a skill range from beginner to ex-Scotland international and an age range from 9 to 59, so if you’re keen to try something new or itching to get back onto a court, you will be made welcome. Adult sessions are on Thursdays at 7.30pm in the Banchory Academy Games Hall during term time. Junior sessions (P6 and upwards) are on Mondays at 6pm in the same venue.
Contact club treasurer Alex Wilowska at awilowska @wintertel.com.