Lady Raiders took volleyball to a new level this fall

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By Dave Taylor

Trimble Countians should all be pleased with the outstanding volleyball season our Lady Raiders put together this fall! The stellar 22-9 record compiled by this team of girls ranks with some of the best records ever compiled in any sport – basketball included – by some of the best teams ever fielded by good old Trimble High and Milton High schools in days of yore.

Remarkably, the volleyball program’s most successful year ever was accomplished with only two seniors on the roster. Head Coach Ruth Staples saw 10 freshmen come out for the program this year and many saw extensive action during the season along with sophomores Paige Black, McKenna Ginn and Micah Hess, juniors Kelsey Courtney and Hannah Roberts and seniors Sara Kuner and Jayde Snelling.

The season completed last week is only the 10th for the Lady Raiders under the current Kentucky High School Athletic Association volleyball program. The 2010 Lady Raiders, at 14-12, were the first Trimble team to compile a winning record. Their 14 wins equaled the 14-win season compiled against 15 defeats by the 2004 team.

Trimble County started volleyball at the high school level in 2002, according to Staples. The move came as a result of Title IX, which ruled that there had to be an equal number of girls’ sports to boys.’

“Title IX actually came into effect I think in 1978,” Staples said following Trimble’s successful run through the 8th Region All-A Classic last month. “I was at Bellarmine in 1978 when Title IX was put in at the college level, so I am sure high schools came under the law a lot later. Schools must have been granted 20 years to enact Title IX,” Staples continued.

Girls in high schools throughout Kentucky voted in 2001 and chose volleyball as an additional sport. Staples was told that if schools didn’t comply with Title IX by 2003, the school district would have been fined.

“So, that is how TCHS started volleyball,” Staples said. Staples had recently retired from the Department of Corrections at that time. “I had played volleyball and basketball at Bellarmine College (now University), and applied for the coaching position, which I have held since.”

Trimble’s two seniors on this year’s team—Sara Kuner and Jayde Snelling—confidently and competently stepped into leadership roles vacated by last year’s seniors Raegan Black and Kasi Fogle who helped get Trimble’s winning program underway. Now with two consecutive winning seasons behind them the underclassmen can purpose in their hearts that the program will continue to grow stronger in the years to come.

“It is very exciting as a coach to see our program progress,” Staples said.

It was exciting for an old Trimble grad to watch from behind the camera lens as these ladies dismantled foe after foe this season. I wish the crowds had been greater in number and the cheers louder in volume because the girls certainly deserved the support. It may take a few years yet for volleyball to get the respect and attention it deserves among the student body and the community at large. This year’s effort was certainly a bold step in that direction.

I encourage everyone when you see any of these girls around the community or in the halls at school to be sure to congratulate them on their success and on the excellent way they carried themselves with character while representing Trimble County.

To all the Lady Raiders, Coaches Staples, Vanita Fogle and Tonya Black: You are a class act. Hold your heads high. You’ve made us proud!