Men’s Volleyball Team Gaining Interest

Volleyball coach Wes Briscoe is bringing something to Jeffersonville High School that many have been waiting for. Briscoe, who coached the Jeff High girls volleyball team to their first winning season in some time, is in the process of bringing together a group of dedicated boys to form the school’s new men’s volleyball team. 

There are a couple of things you need to know before coming to the camps over the winter and open gyms in the spring. First, for those on the team, practices will be every day. Coach Briscoe expects commitment. “It’s going to be very serious,” he says.

Secondly, it’s not going to be easy. Briscoe says that it will not be like P.E. volleyball. He explains that despite first impressions, volleyball is a contact sport. Although a net divides the court, it still gets physical. “If you have to throw your body on the floor to get a ball up, that’s what I expect as a coach,” says Briscoe.

In starting the new team, Briscoe hopes to see excitement in players and fans alike. “There’s not a passion for volleyball at Jeff,” says Briscoe. “That’s something I’m trying to change.”

 

By Kristen Jacobs

FALL SPORTS: Wrap up

FOOTBALL 

After starting off their sectionals with a win, the JHS football team plans to fight for all four quarters tomorrow against Floyd Central in the sectional championship game. The team is pumped up after beating New Albany in the first round of sectionals. Senior Ethan Rogers said, “I feel like our confidence is boosted after the win against New Albany.” He added that “this is a big game for all the seniors.” Unfortunately one senior will be watching from the sidelines. Running back Isaac Finley won’t be playing against Floyd Central due to an ankle injury.

GIRLS SOCCER

Starting of their season with deep with juniors and sophomores only three returning seniors, the Lady Devils soccer team worked hard to come together as a team. A tough schedule and weather-related practice cancellations added to their challenges. Senior Bella Bungcayao stated, “This season is bittersweet because it is my last one. I hope next year will be better for all of the girls.” The Lady Devils started sectionals strong, with a win against Jennings County, but ended their season with a loss to rival Floyd Central

BOYS SOCCER

The 2019 season for the JHS soccer team was really successful. A win over Providence gave the boys a boost of confidence going into sectionals. Starting off their sectionals against rival New Albany seemed to be the best challenge, but the boys fell 1-0. “Next year the boys have a really good shot at winning sectionals. I would be really shocked if they don’t,” said senior Lex Hawkins.

VOLLEYBALL 

Even before the season started, new head coach Wes Briscoe quickly set out to build a strong team. They started strong with a win over Charlestown, while also facing challenges that tested the strength of a team. “It wasn’t really what I expected. As a team we really grew closer,” said sophomore Rachel Lowe. Our Lady Devils pulled through, ending the season with a four-game winning streak and the first winning season in recent history for the program.

BOYS TENNIS 

The Jeff High tennis team owned the courts all season long. With four returning seniors, they won the sectional title once again (the 11th straight and the 24th overall in school history). Several members of the team received conference and state awards for their outstanding performance on the court during the 2019 season. Senior Adam Crawford knows it will take a lot of effort to keep up the winning tradition. “I would recommend to the younger kids coming up to put in a lot of work,” he said. “Tennis is one of the hardest sports you can play.”

GIRLS GOLF

Our 21 Lady Devils dominated the season on the golf course. The Lady Devils had many games postponed due to rainy weather conditions, but that didn’t hold them back. With 52 wins and 17 losses, they still finished with a winning season. Coach Dusty Corum said the team “had a very successful golf season this year [with] very good overall performance from the girls.” Even with a winning season, Junior Baylee Lawler still believes that there is always room for improvement next year.

CROSS COUNTRY

The JHS cross country team had to be adaptable this fall as many practices were canceled due to the heat index. Injuries also took a toll on the team. Senior Matthew Leuhart couldn’t run in the beginning of the season due to an ankle injury. “The season didn’t start off too well because I got injured pretty bad,” Leuhart said, “but I came back and was able to make varsity and run at sectionals.” Senior Leo Burns received a medal and made it out of sectionals. Our Lady Red Devil runners had some rough competition against Seymour and Silver Creek. They received a lot of personal records, yet still look for more improvement in the future. “I believe if we work hard enough, we can get past sectionals for the next season to come,” said junior Kendall Stackhouse.

 

On to the Next One

 

photo by Evan Petty

Story by Kylee Luce

The Jeffersonville High School volleyball team ended last year with a record of 12-16.  Shortly after the 2015-16 season, former coach Renee Stock made the decision to resign, meaning the team would be getting a new coach for their upcoming season.

At the end of March 2016, it was announced that the new volleyball coach would be former Red Devil Liz Cooper-Laythe. Cooper-Laythe, a Jeff alumni that graduated in 2007, was coached by Stock during her high school volleyball years, and played three out of four years at the Varsity level.

“Being back feels good; it just feels like home” Cooper-Laythe said.

Cooper-Laythe was hesitant to get into high school coaching initially, but after spending time thinking about it, she decided she was ready for the task.

“It didn’t feel right. I didn’t think I knew enough about it to run a whole program and I was young and not ready,” Cooper-Laythe said about her doubts.

When Stock resigned and she heard the news, it was the right timing and she decided she was ready. Cooper-Laythe stated that, “Basically the whole volleyball community persuaded me to apply for the coaching position.”

Cooper-Laythe has some coaching experience, including club volleyball for Prodigy. She also has been doing private lessons for many years. The 26-year-old has many new ideas that she wants to implement into Jeff’s volleyball program.

“I would like to change the mindset. I don’t want kids to be afraid to make mistakes,” Cooper-Laythe said. “I want them to think positively about themselves, not only because I am coaching athletes, but because I am coaching women that will be adults one day. My job is not only to make them confident athletes, but confident women,” Cooper-Laythe said.

Current players are already excited for the change, including senior Alexis Bassett.

“Change brings opportunity and I believe that Coach Liz brings a lot to the court.” said senior Alexis Bassett.

The hiring process was an easy one when it came to Cooper-Laythe.

“Coach Liz was hired for a number of reason,” Athletic Director Todd Satterly said. “She was the most qualified candidate, is a former Jeffersonville graduate, was provided excellent references by respected and successful coaches throughout the area, is incredibly passionate and knowledgeable about the sport, and I believe will relate well to our student-athletes.”

The team and coach Laythe want to win and have high hopes for the upcoming season.

“I would like to have one big upset,” Cooper-Laythe said. “A team that we aren’t supposed to beat; I want to beat.”