For Medora’s Allison Carney, there isn’t a facet of volleyball she doesn’t like.
“I enjoy being on the court,” Carney said. “I enjoy everything about it. I love my teammates, how tight we are as a small school. I love how exciting it is, like if you get a good volley. I love that part about it.”
Through the years, Carney has played different positions for the Hornets.
“I usually play all-around,” Carney said. “Starting this year, since we didn’t have many players, they put me as libero because when I was in front row, nobody could pass the ball to get a good set, and I wouldn’t be able to hit the ball.
“For a couple of weeks, I played libero. Now, we’re running a 6-2 with me and my cousin (Kailen Flynn) as setters. It’s all about reading their shoulders. If you have some hitters go up and it looks like they’re going angle and they go line, that’s just an easy mistake to make.”
Carney said it depends on the game as to whether she likes playing on the front row or the back row.
“It depends on if I’m passing good that game or I’m hitting well that game,” she said. “It depends on how I’m feeling that night. It’s all about timing.”
While some of the nights are long, Carney enjoys the time with teammates on the road.
“I love the bus rides because we all talk about things. We talk about our lives,” Carney said. “We just started knitting. We’re helping each other knit on the bus, so it’s just a lot of fun.”
Carney said the prematch warmups are important, and practice is a key to success.
“We want to focus in warmups to get our head in the game so we don’t psych ourselves out if we see a good hitter on the other side so we don’t get really scared,” she said. “When we’re on the sideline warming up, our assistant coach, Missy Stewart, will watch and see where they hit the ball, how good their passing is, if there’s any holes available to hit in. She’ll tell us wherever they’re hitting.”
On the court, Carney always is talking to her teammates.
“Communication, seriously, is everything in volleyball,” Carney said. “If one person thinks another person is getting the pass and nobody calls it, the ball just drops, and without a set, we’re without a hit, we’re without a point.”
Carney said the keys to having a winning season are teamwork and getting everyone healthy and staying healthy.
“Another thing to win is always communication,” she said. “Volleyball is a game of mistakes, and whoever makes the least amount of mistakes wins.”
She said it has been an interesting experience playing for her mother, Sara Todd, who has been her varsity coach all four years in high school.
“I enjoy it,” she said. “It’s a lot of fun being able to experience your high school volleyball with your mom. It is hard being a coach’s kid because you have to live up to that expectation all the time and feel that pressure of everyone in the stands.
“They say, ‘Well, that’s the coach’s daughter. She should be good at this. She shouldn’t make mistakes,’ and you just have to get over it and play the best you can and hope that’s OK for everyone. My freshman year, I went out and was scared to death of the audience we had because I was a coach’s daughter, and I felt I was under the spotlight, and my sophomore year, I got over that.”
She said she and mother talk about volleyball at home.
“If we had a bad game, she’ll ask, ‘What do you think we ought to do?'” Carney said. “If I have a bad hitting game, I’ll ask her what do I need to work on. If we had a bad match, we’ll talk about what exercises we can do in practice. During volleyball season, our lives are conformed around volleyball.”
The senior has enjoyed her time at Medora.
“I love it here,” Carney said. “I’ve been here since preschool. It’s awesome to be able to play games with people you have every class with because you really get to bond with people. At bigger schools, you might not even see your teammates on a daily basis.”
Name: Allison Carney
School: Medora High School
Parents: Sara Todd, Todd Carney
Sports: Volleyball, four years; boys basketball manger, one year
Athletic highlights: Serving award two years, passing award one year
Organizations: Beta Club, Student Council, National Technical Honor Society, HOSA
Plans after high school: Attend college to study to be a pediatric nurse practitioner
Favorite food: Streak and green beans
Favorite TV show: “Big Brother”
Favorite music: Pop, hip-hop
Favorite movie: “Remember the Titans”
Favorite team: Indiana University