Volleyball mania: Reed City girls putting in tons of practice time

Coyotes ready to start formal practices on Aug. 8

Reed City volleyball coach Don Patterson (middle) talks with his team after Tuesday's open gym.

Reed City volleyball coach Don Patterson (middle) talks with his team after Tuesday's open gym.

File photo

REED CITY – Don Patterson is used to having a busy summer because of coaching volleyball at Reed City.

This was another hectic one.

Volleyball practices start in August but Patterson had open gyms and other activities during the summer to get them ready for the fall campaign.

“In July we do our open gyms and we do the Ferris camps,” Patterson said, noting this gives the basketball coaches access to athletes for summer work during July.

The Ferris camps allow volleyball teams like Patterson’s to play a lot of sports.

The final open gym was at RCHS on Tuesday.

“We do a lot of them during the summer,” Patterson said. “We try to stay in July and basketball tries to stay in June.”

Open gyms also include “some individual skills stuff,” Patterson said. “We’ll work on some passing and hitting skills and individual stuff and  little bit of scrimmages.”

Maintenance crews will do some work on the gym floors, Patterson said, while his team takes a break and gets ready for the fall season.

When Aug. 8 arrives, “we’ll do two-a-days,” he said. “We’ll come in early and we’ll leave later. We’ll be in basically 8 to 8 for three or four day. The kids will camp out. We’ll set up upstairs.”

Patterson had around 12 girls in the gym on Tuesday and said he’s had upwards to 30 on somedays. All are high school kids.

“It’s good for them to have early touches and for us to have early looks on kids and see where they may fit in,” Patterson said.