By Chris Parker
Parkview volleyball has a new head coach in Amber Doolittle. She has been an assistant at Parkview for the past six seasons.
“Being part of the volleyball program, I was able to build a positive relationship with the athletes over the years,” Doolittle said.
Janae Johnson will be a leader for the Vikings at middle blocker and hitter.
“She has been on varsity since she was a freshman, and she has improved over the years,” Doolittle said. “She is a great leader on and off the court. Janae will be one of our go-to players this year.”
Senior outside hitter Mikaela Whalen and junior middle blocker and hitter Kenzie Edwards also return to the lineup for the Vikings.
Cheyenne Preiner (senior outside) and Kaley Swanigan (senior libero) are newcomers to watch for Parkview this year.
The COVID-19 pandemic has provided plenty of obstacles for Doolittle and Vikings as the try to prepare for the 2020 season.
“This summer has been different with summer workouts because of COVID. We would usually participate in leagues in June, and this would allow us to get more contact with the ball and we could practice on different plays in a game setting,” Doolittle said. “We would also participate in a one day tournament during the summer that is also beneficial for the girls. Even though this summer is different from before, we are still able to improve and prepare for the upcoming season. Players and parents have been very understanding during this time.”
A big change for Missouri volleyball this year will be switching to a five set format for matches.
“I love that we switched to a five-set format this season,” Doolittle said. “I believe that this will make the games more intense. This will also help prepare athletes who are interested playing at the next level.”
Parkview will open the season on Aug. 29 at the Branson Invitational.
“Expectations for this year is to go out and play hard every game,” Doolittle said. “Athletes will have individual goals that they want to succeed, and then we will have team goals. This is something we will go over before season starts.”