No net? No gym? No problem.
Coach Maureen Reilly has done whatever she can to serve up the new Pacific Trails Middle School’s first ever volleyball team.
The school gym is not anticipated to be complete until Nov. 30, and there were no sunken poles or even a net on campus. But there was a sand volleyball court at neighboring Canyon Crest Academy and 12 girls who were willing to get their feet dirty and start playing.
“They’re really good sports and they’re really motivated,” said Reilly of the Pacific Trails team.
The school just completed voting on their new mascot—the Pacific Trails Wolves—and the girls are very excited about the silver team color of their new uniforms.
Pacific Trails’ first game in the Big 8 Middle School Sports League run by the Boys & Girls Club of San Dieguito is scheduled for the end of the month. There will be a lot of away games in Carmel Valley, Solana Beach and Rancho Santa Fe for this inaugural season. Pacific Trails has also formed flag football and cross country teams for this first year.
Reilly, a mother of five children ranging in ages from three to 10, is a former teacher who taught at an international school in Switzerland for eight years. While there, she also coached the middle school and high school varsity volleyball and basketball teams for five years before moving back to the US.
The family left Switzerland for Boston in 2012 and moved to San Diego in 2013 because of her husband’s work.
Reilly grew up in Tampa, Florida and her first introduction to volleyball was at the same time as her current players, as a middle schooler. She was a Florida High School All Star and went on to play volleyball at Emory University. She later got her masters in education from the University of Michigan.
In addition to her coaching duties, she is also working as a substitute teacher in North County schools, managing a “Rubik’s Cube of schedules” for her five children, work and volleyball practices three times a week.
“I love to coach. I’m so excited that I get to do it again,” Reilly said. “For me it’s really nice to see kids outside of the classroom. I love the opportunity for them to be competitive and exercise, and especially with girls, it’s an opportunity to develop self-confidence and help with their self-esteem issues.”
While youth club volleyball is big in San Diego, Reilly is excited that many of her players are new to the sport and she is happy to provide them with their first introduction to it.
To tap into that popular club volleyball market, Reilly has also started Dunk Set Sports, offering private youth coaching for youth volleyball, basketball and personal training.
“I have a passion for finding creative ways to get kids moving as well as for helping athletes push past their boundaries,” Reilly said.
Learn more about Dunk Set Sports at dunksetsports.strikingly.com.