The Rockwood Thunder Volleyball Club sent 11 teams to the recent Junior National Championship in Minneapolis and returned with outstanding results.
Team U16 Mizuno won the championship in the National division, finishing the tournament with an impressive match record of 10-1.
“The first day of tryouts, I knew we were going to be good,” said Team U16 Mizuno player Taryn Griffey. “We decided early on that we were going to win Nationals. It was our goal. The experience was absolutely incredible.”
Teammate Kaitlyn Bright agreed.
“Throughout the season we worked hard,” Bright said. “We practiced a lot. There are always nerves, but I feel like once we hit the courts, we were focused. When it hit game point, we ran to the middle together. We knew we had proven ourselves. We were a team on the court, but we were a family off the court.”
In addition to the U16 national championship, four other Rockwood Thunder teams finished in the top five in the nation in their divisions, giving Rockwood Thunder the best overall results of any club from the Gateway Region of USA Volleyball. Finishing in the top five were: U12 Mizuno, fifth place, National Division; U13 Mizuno, fifth place, American Division; U15 Mizuno, fifth place, National Division and U18 Mizuno, fifth place, Open Division.
Six Rockwood Thunder players also were recognized for their play and selected to the all-tournament teams in their respective age groups. They are: Lauren Reding, U15 Mizuno; Katelyn Bright, U16 Mizuno and MVP of the U16 National division; Haley McSparin, U16 Mizuno; Taryn Griffey, U16 Mizuno; Lily Johnson, U18 Mizuno; and Maggie Scott, U18 Mizuno.