Sand Volleyball has arrived

Sand Volleyball has arrived

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For the first time in school history, Boise State has an official sand volleyball team.

“I think it’s really exciting and we are all pretty excited about it,” junior outside hitter Sarah
Horton said.

This brand new sports program was added this past year and its maiden season is officially
underway.

“It was fun,” freshman middle backer  Laney Hayes said. “It was a surprise to come out and see teams with previous experience and that weekend was a big learning experience for us.”

The Broncos had their first games this past weekend with a California road trip that saw Boise State win two out of five matches.

“I’m really excited on where we are at,” head coach Shawn Garus said. “We didn’t know what to expect and picking up two wins was just fantastic.”

Garus, who is also the head coach for the indoor volleyball team, was instrumental in bringing sand volleyball to Boise State.

“I have been involved with trying to grow the sport of sand volleyball for over six years now,” Garus said.

The sand volleyball team is made up entirely of the indoor volleyball team from the fall and its focus right now is helping the team get that valuable extra experience.

“I think playing in the sand will get me more comfortable going into my senior indoor season,” sophomore outside hitter Alyssa Gammel said. “It’s definitely going to benefit me and our entire team.”

Though much of the team hasn’t played competitively in sand before, Gammel has already seen
improvement.

“Not a whole lot of us have played sand volleyball before so it’s definitely a learning experience, Gammel said. “But we have definitely benefitted from it.”

Sand volleyball is quite different than normal indoor volleyball so there is a lot to adjust to.

“It’s definitely more personal,” Gammel said. “You learn to work with each other and communicate with one another because it’s just you and that other person.”

Boise State is hoping the addition of the program will prompt more players to come to the university.

“It will really help in the recruiting process,” Garus said. “Being able to be one of the schools that offers both indoor and sand volleyball is fantastic and this will bring in more recruits.”

The future of the sport does indeed looks bright as already several other schools across the nation have or are considering
adding it.

“I believe there will be as many as six Mountain West schools having a sand volleyball in the next two years,” Garus said. “I see it growing a lot in our conference and it’s a sport that’s not going to go away, so we want to put ourselves in a position where we are going to be competitive.”

Despite inexperience the Broncos are looking to have a solid season and believe they have what it takes
to do so.

“We definitely have the potential to win matches which we proved this last weekend,” Horton said. “Hopefully we can keep competing, keeping the matches close and
getting wins.”

The team certainly feels that is only the beginning and that the best is still yet to come.

“It’s just exciting to think about the upcoming years,” Hayes said. “Once we get that experience under our belts we can keep getting better and compete with those top teams.”

Brandon Walton
Brandon is a senior at Boise State where he is majoring in communication. He transferred to Boise State in 2012 from TVCC in Ontario, Oregon. Brandon has been writing sports for The Arbiter since Spring 2013 and just recently became the Assistant Sports Editor for The Arbiter. He is also involved with the Boise State radio station the Pulse and has several radio shows. His dream job is to work as a sports broadcaster for a big network such as ESPN as well as continuing writing sports for a major newspaper or magazine. In his spare time he watches sports, movies, plays video games, and owns people in ping pong.