“After you serve, you’re gonna run in,” Michael Baguskis told a group of kids during the final day of Moriarty’s volleyball camp this week. “You’re gonna serve the ball, and then run to a spot.”
Baguskis, Moriarty’s new volleyball head coach, piloted the three-day camp with the help of his assistant coaches and several returning players.
“I think it was a good experience,” Baguskis said. “My assistant coaches did an amazing job and our court coaches also did a good job.”
It was Moriarty’s final youth sports camp of the summer and the first one with Baguskis at the helm. Baguskis has been the team’s assistant coach for several years and previously helped Moriarty’s former head coach, Kim Bell, with the annual summer volleyball camps.
Baguskis said this year’s camp focused mainly on a few of the basic skills, including passing, setting, hitting and serving. At the end of the camp, the kids played a lot of games, including game-like sets in small groups.
Mia Marez, 10, said it was her first-ever volleyball camp and she enjoyed learning the different skills and having fun, adding that the best part was, “Hitting, cuz you get to hit your anger out.”
Her mom, Shandra Marez—who played volleyball at Moriarty back in the day—said Mia is a shy girl and the camp was a great way to learn about the sport and meet new friends.
“She has absolutely loved it,” Shandra Marez said.
Baguskis said he was “pretty pleased” with the turnout, which was more than 30 girls on the first day but dropped to about 20 on the final day.
“I was not expecting as many the first day, and then there are some other things going on in the community and school is starting this week, people are probably doing some last-minute shopping, so the numbers dropped,” Baguskis said. “But we had a good mixture of older and younger girls, so I think they got all the fundamentals out of it.”
Emma Quintana, 11, said she has learned a little about volleyball from her older sister, Miranda, who is one of Moriarty’s players and was one of the court coaches during the camp.
Emma said the camp helped her a lot, particularly with hitting and moving to the proper spots on the court.
“Now I know like more about the positions and where to be at the right time,” Emma said.
Baguskis said the camp was also a good way for him to meet the public, to meet younger players, and to “get our face out there.”
“We encouraged them to come and see some of our games this fall, and hopefully we’ll see them playing here one day,” he said.