Lakewood athletes learn while they teach at youth volleyball camp

LAKEWOOD — For the second year in a row, the city of Marysville's summer youth volleyball camp came to Lakewood High School.

The camp's 24 young participants teamed up with members of the high school's volleyball squad and learned the basics of the sport — how to dig the ball and how to spike. By the end of the four-day camp, even players whose height barely reached the bottom of the net were jumping up to slap volleyballs out of the up-stretched hands of their high school mentors, making at least a few hits over the net.

The campers then broke down into small groups on July 16, the camp's final day, to play a game with their new skills.

While the weeklong program is intended to introduce young athletes to volleyball and help players work on the fundamentals of the sport, the camp benefits the Lakewood High School volleyball players, who lead the camp, as well.

"I like to have my team get involved in the community. It's good for our girls to mentor them. They come to games and cheer us on. It's a big sister, little sister kind of thing," said Lakewood volleyball coach Tasha Kryger, who led the camp with assistant coach Monica Rooney and 14 members of this fall's volleyball squad.

She added that the young girls look up to the high school players. Meanwhile, the Cougar girls learn about the sport by coming to it from a coaching perspective instead of simply as players. It's bound to be of help to what will likely be a young Lakewood team this fall — the program graduated four seniors and lost their lone junior to a move.

"Right after school let out we had a camp for our volleyball players. Then we had this camp," Kryger said. "It was really good for our girls to take what they learned and teach it at this camp. It helps them become better players.

"I'm really proud of our girls. Every one of them came away with something from the camp," Kryger added.

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