For most teams, the biggest goal for each season is to win as many games as possible. The leader of the team’s responsibility is to make sure that objective happens.
That is just not the case for Cedarville University’s volleyball team this season. Senior captain Abby Shelton knows that the wins and records are not eternal, but the souls of her teammates are.
“This season is about so much more than just volleyball,” Shelton said.
That is where it all starts for the Cedarville University volleyball team. Shelton knows volleyball is just a medium for herself and her team to grow in God.
“This season, one of my goals is to love and serve my team,” Shelton said. “I also want to see what God is doing in other teams.”
Shelton has a job to do as a leader. She said she wants to lead the team toward a closer relationship with Jesus Christ. But she is also a star senior on the Yellow Jacket volleyball team. With awards like first-team All-American, GMAC co-player of the year and many others, Shelton will be a key part to Cedarville’s success this season.
After joining the 1,000-kill club in the fourth game of the season, Shelton looks to help lead her team to things that are more important than volleyball. She understands, as do her teammates, that volleyball is only a game. What really matters is that the team grows in Christ.
Shelton’s friend and teammate, Angela Becker, helps lead the team in the same way.
“As seniors, we have a platform to serve for the season,” Becker said. “We want to set the standard for the future of volleyball, and pass on spiritual leadership.”
As a leader on the volleyball team, Shelton understands there are some things that need to be avenged from last season. Cedarville’s 2015 season ended in a conference championship loss to Trevecca Nazarene, a team they had beaten twice before their final meeting that ended Cedarville’s season.
Beating Trevecca is not the ultimate, life fulfilling goal for this season, but it is higher on the preseason wish list than many other goals. The pre-season G-MAC polls pegged Trevecca at the top of the list, barely edging Cedarville.
Early in the season, Cedarville was able to notch one of their most impressive wins of their program’s history over Findlay on Sept. 20. This propelled the team to a 9-2 record. The team turned their attention to the G-MAC in late September.
With a 12-4 record, a milestone win for its school’s history, and loads of potential for the rest of the season, Cedarville is on fire on the court, and more importantly on fire for God.
Shelton trusts her teammates, and her teammates trust her, thanks to all of them trusting in God.
That is the pinnacle for the 2016 edition of the Cedarville volleyball team, and the season’s outlook is sky high.
Tim Miller is a freshman journalism student at Cedarville University. Tim loves anything that has to do with sports, and hopes to write about sports for a career after graduating from Cedarville.