Friday, October 24, 2014
   
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Not all success measured by wins

When Swede volleyball fans look back at the 2010 season, they may have a hard time seeing past the 9-21 record.

It certainly wasn’t the final numbers anyone on Gothenburg’s team wanted.

But for coach Becky Costello, the record isn’t what matters most.

“You can’t always measure success by wins and losses,” Costello said. “To me, success is the girls working hard every day and giving their best effort to make their team better.”

A grueling schedule made it tough for the Swedes to find the win column often but, Costello said, it also helped them grow as players.

“We played 77 sets in 30 games,” Costello said. “In those, we scored 20 or more points 50 times and we scored at least 18 points in 57 sets. That means we were in those games to the end in all but 20 sets.”

Seven of Gothenburg’s opponents throughout the season were either in the district final or made an appearance at state.

“We played a lot of quality teams,” Costello said.

That stiff competition helped build strong players who earned 16 new all-time Top 10 spots in six different categories.

Sophomore left-handed hitter Jacey Wiggins led the Swedes with seven Top 10 performances, the highest coming at No. 4 in both hit attempts and kills.

“Jacey really became a solid all-around player,” Costello said. “She was not only one of our go-to hitters but she also stepped into a role as a setter and was a consistent server making 90%.”

Team members voted Wiggins this year’s most valuable player for good reason.

She led the team in made serves, good hits and setting percentage.

“As the year went on, Jacey really improved,” Costello said. “I look for her to build on that next year.”

Senior Ali Clark earned three new all-time spots as the libero this year.

Clark came close to matching last year’s school record for digs with 344 this year. She now holds the No. 1 and No. 2 spots in the category.

“Defensively Ali was as consistent as they get,” the coach said. “She was proved to be a strong server.”

In addition to making the Top 10 in digs, Clark also earned the No. 8 position in both serves attempted and service aces.

Fellow senior Abby Amler led the Gothenburg servers with 44 aces and 137 service points.

Ambler landed in the No. 2 position for aces just eight shy of the record. She is also seventh all-time in service points.

“Abby did a super job as a versatile player,” Costello said. “She was always willing to do whatever was asked of her.”

Joslyn Oliver, another senior, took over two Top 10 spots as well. She is now No. 7 in hit attempts with 409 and No. 8 in the kill category putting down 135.

“Joslyn battled injury for two years,” Costello said. “She worked hard to improve her game, especially as a defensive player.”

Two more Swedes notched one Top 10 spot each.

Senior McKenzie Geiken, who played the setter position for the past three years, moves into the No. 6 spot in set assists.

“McKenzie got to set to our kill leaders Jacey and Joslyn,” Costello said, “and she did a good job of

Find the complete story and individual statistics in our print edition. Receive the entire issue of the Gothenburg Times on-line in PDF format each Wednesday for only $25 per year. Call 308-537-3636 to subscribe.

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