BREWER – In his first year at the helm for the upstart Brewer Witches volleyball program, Rich Nutter kept the message simple.
“He basically he told us from the beginning, I don’t care about wins or losses, I just want you to go out there and learn the sport and have fun with it,” senior Rebecca Gideon said.
Brewer’s first year as a program didn’t count for or against them, but now it heads towards go-time as it enters its second year. For Nutter, that means getting them ready as quickly as possible.
“The girls can appreciate volleyball,” he said Wednesday. “Start at a younger age. Develop the fundamentals there, so when they get into the high school, they’re ready for real tough competition.”
The development starts at the first ever Brewer volleyball camp, kicking off this week and running through Friday. A mix of high school and middle school kids from Brewer and the surrounding area came to town for the clinic, with the coaches hoping they would come away with the necessary tools to sharpen their game.
“[It] give[s] them the techniques that they could use. But there’s no substitute for context. You’ve got to have context and repetition, and they have to do that on their own,” Nutter said.
Skill development is crucial, but for Nutter and his players, the camp may also help the school create a volleyball culture at the school.
“It’s a really great opportunity for everyone to come out and try new things,” junior Sydney Blain said. “So I feel like if these kids come out and they’re just trying this sport, they’re going to enjoy it even more and we can build up a bigger program.”
And the culture could become one that could take Brewer to new heights as well.
“One that the girls can definitely have fun with this activity,” Nutter said. “If you’re not having fun, there’s no sense in doing it. But you also want to be competitive, and that’s what it’s all about. They wouldn’t keep score if it wasn’t important.”
“This camp is definitely going to help,” Gideon said in agreement. “I think we’ve got some middle schoolers, some incoming freshmen coming in just to learn the sport and understand what it’s all about. And I seriously think if we keep doing these kind of things, there’s a bright future ahead for volleyball at brewer.”