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Teams that build relationships win big

When the team is down and needs to get out of a funk, it’s good to know that the team has leaders that they can fall back on to pick the team up. Senior Andi Bishop, at 5 foot 9 inches, is one of the girls the team turns to. Bishop said the team is a very cohesive unit this year and has worked hard to work as a team.

Bishop plays on the Trojans volleyball team and is part of a one-two-three punch on the front line. She is one reason the team still has a chance of turning their 3-5 league record into a winning one, just halfway through the season.

Bishop said it has taken hard work to become a part of this team and that the team has worked hard not only on volleyball skills, but building good relationships with each other. She believes this year to be her best year, despite the losses because of the relationships that have been fostered. She said it’s not just learning the game with this team.

“The team has come a long way and we all are much closer as a team,” she said. “We are better friends this year and this makes us better players because it helps to get into your teammates’ mind. You know what they are thinking and how they are playing.”

She also said the good relationships with team members make it easier to support one another when things get rough. “When things get tough it’s good to have those teammates that you can count on,” Bishop said. “We pick each other up and we have fun with it and don’t take things too seriously.”

Trojans coach Jill Harris agrees with her. “She doesn’t question what I tell her and she has become a good team leader on the court,” Harris said. Bishop has been playing the game since she was a freshman and she also plays basketball and softball for the Trojans.

As far as relationships with the team, that’s one thing, but to have a good relationship with the coach, that makes things all the better and she feels she connects with this coach better than her other coaches.

“Volleyball is my favorite sport and that’s because of the relationship I have with the coach,” Bishop said. “I love the sport because I have more fun with volleyball and of course the relationship with the coach makes a difference. I love playing for my coach,” she added. “And of course my coach has had a huge impact on my character too.”

Bishop says it’s not hard to play hard for a coach that supports you. “She is fun, respectful and nice to the whole team, regardless if you are starting or not,” Bishop said. “My coach has taught me to try my hardest in every aspect of my life, not just volleyball.”

Bishop talked about being in a slump in the early part of the season. “My coach helped me through this bad time for me,” the young player said. “I was really sucking and she picked me up. She worked with me and took me to the net and worked on my hitting.”

Harris said when she worked with her player that she was receptive to what she was saying. “I told her she had it in her,” the coach said. “We changed her attitude and I let her know that I had a lot of confidence in her.”

In addition to the coach working with her on the court, the player said she has tremendous support off the court at home. “My mom and step-dad played a big role in shaping my character too,” she said.

When Bishop finishes this season she hopes to get into sports medicine and attend UNLV. Bishop said she will miss the relationships she has made with players and coaches. “My fondest memories will always be the sports I played and I will miss the friends I made and my coaches,” she said.

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