Kinston continues to work on volleyball program

Kinston continues to work on volleyball program

Kinston's Nikylah Williams prepares a serve in Wednesday's match against Havelock. Photo by William "Bud" Hardy / Neuse News

Trust the process of Kinston volleyball.

The Vikings haven’t shared the success of other teams across the area, compounded by a 29-game skid after Wednesday’s match against Havelock. Kinston hasn’t won a match since defeating Greene Central on Oct. 13, 2015, but there were positive signs in the loss to Havelock.

The Rams (2-2) picked up a 25-17, 21-25, 25-16, 25-21 victory, but the Vikings held a lead in every set. Kinston (0-2) started the game ahead 5-2, had an 8-1 run in the third set to crawl out of a 9-4 deficit and took a 4-2 advantage in the fourth set. Kinston assistant coach Shonda Hines said there’s no quit in the roster, even with a handful of varsity players.

“These girls give their all in everything they do and continue to work hard,” Hines said. “We only have seven varsity players, so they have to scrimmage JV, but day in and day out they’re putting in the time to improve.”

Several of the players on the roster were a part of Kinston’s 2017-18 basketball team, as Zykia Andrews, Quiaira Powell, Alena Rivers and Lesley Sutton helped the team go 29-2 with a berth in the 2A Eastern Regional finals. Sutton said the competitive nature remains present from one sport to the other.

“You just play your hardest to win and when you don’t, it hurts,” Sutton said. “We go into practice every day and try to work on the little things to get better.”

Vikings basketball coach Christopher Bradshaw said the girls will continue to grow their volleyball games, which will also benefit them in the next sport.

“As a coach, you have to support the other players and coaches in different sports,” Bradshaw said. “With volleyball, the girls are jumping almost every play, which can help with rebounding and getting up the floor quicker. They all hate to lose and will keep working like that do during basketball season.”

Nikylah Williams said the team is always looking to improve off the court as well.

“We’re trying new things as we go and look up videos to help us get better,” Williams said. “We have to keep our energy up and stick together the entire game. We all want to do better than last year.”

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