They are the youngest ones on court and the feeling is different. They were always used to playing with girls their own age but this year it was different. These are super sophomores, Ireland McCauley and Chloe Charles have been deemed “Super Sophomores” as they have earned their sports on the varsity team.
“I was really excited at first and I was honestly surprised because I moved here in the middle of freshman year,” Charles said. “[It] was pretty scary not knowing anyone, but when I was told I made varsity I was really [thrilled] because I worked really hard in tryouts.”
Charles is a hitter on the team, usually positioned on the right side and has a total of 163 kills in 96 sets, since mid August.
“When I’m playing defense, it’s always fun to challenge the hitters when they are going to attack,” she said. “When I’m hitting and I get a set, I always like to finish the point right away by playing smart and placing it in open spots.”
Charles started playing volleyball in middle school then joined a club team when she lived in Washington.
“I decided to keep playing volleyball because I fell in love with the sport,” Charles said. “I joined a club team my 13’s year and have kept playing.”
She also plays sand volleyball and said that contributes to her skills on the court.
“My dad talked to me about sand volleyball and I started playing that as well and now sand is my favorite,” she said. “I did a lot of training in the sand and personally I think it’s easier to stay fast indoors.”
McCauley is the defensive specialist on the team and has dug 378 balls in 101 sets. Her teammate junior Egadi Santos said McCauley is a competitor on the court and never hesitates to give her 110 percent.
“She’s a big part of our team with her inevitable hustle and outstanding skills,” Santos said.
McCauley has been playing volleyball since she was in fifth grade. She plays club volleyball for Austin Skyline.
“It’s definitely different because I’m so used to playing with girls my own age, but I actually really like it because a lot of the older girls set a good example and push me and Chloe to keep up,” McCauley said.
The girls participate in team bonding like team dinners and team meetings.
“I enjoy spending time with the girls before every game. We dance and sing in the locker room, it’s really fun,” McCauley said.