Kruse-ing to success


The girls varsity volleyball team meets in the south gym for practice on Tuesday. The team finished the season 23-11.

The girls varsity volleyball team meets in the south gym for practice on Tuesday. The team finished the season 23-11.Coming into the season, the H-F girls’ varsity volleyball team had a total of 10 players on it, the least since 2012. The team also lost six seniors that made up nearly half of the 14 players in 2017.

Even though the odds were against the Vikings, they still found a way to have a great season.
This season was anything but disastrous as our Vikings are 23-11, including huge wins against Lockport, Bolingbrook and Lincoln-Way East, a team H-F hadn’t beaten in 10 years. They also won the Manteno Tournament winning four games out of five.

From what this team has shown, it doesn’t matter how many players varsity head coach Anthony Kruse has on his team, he still finds a way to be successful.

“We are a young team and I might have said our inexperience was one of our weaknesses coming into the season,” Kruse said. “But a lot of our juniors have experience playing varsity and we’ve shown over the course of the season we do know how to win games.”

Junior defensive specialist Allison Faoro is one of the players Kruse was talking about. She credits her coach for their success.

“We didn’t know what to expect with a new coach at first, but Kruse and the girls got along really well in a short period of time,” Faoro said. “He brings a lot of energy and brings our team closer together because we’re all working to reach our goals.”

Before the season started, the arrows were pointing towards a mediocre year of volleyball, but junior libero Skylar Hayes and junior middle hitter/blocker Miara Bolden are two of the players who redirected those arrows and produced a great season.

“We do so much just to be able to make a play on the ball. All of that jumping and diving and running, we do all of this hard work and that’s why we’re so cold,” Hayes said.

Many people don’t understand the point of volleyball, but Bolden does.

“We’re always underestimated; nobody thinks about H-F volleyball. They think we’re just girls who play volleyball. No, there’s more to us than just that,” Bolden said. “We come in as underdogs, but we come out beating teams like Lincoln-Way East and Bolingbrook.”

The win against Lincoln-Way East was a huge accomplishment for coach Kruse and his team.

“Anytime you take down one of the Lincoln-Way schools, it’s always a good feeling,” Kruse said. “To be able to go into their gym and get a win against Lincoln-Way East was a huge confidence booster.”

The team credits its success to not just their energy, but also on their chemistry, according to junior right side hitter Jaylyn Clark.

“I feel like everyone on the team is a friend and we have a strong bond as a team. That makes it easier to play together on the court together as a team,” Clark said.

The team took that energy and chemistry and turned it into a successful season. At the end of the day, you could say the H-F girls’ varsity volleyball program is “set” up for winning now and in the future.