Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

September 25, 2013

Hayes has IUK volley on rise

First-year coach Hayes has IUK volley on rise

Heather Hayes describes herself as a “passionate perfectionist.”

An intense desire to succeed in her volleyball career as a player at Frankfort High School, the University of Montevallo and later the University of Indianapolis followed her into her coaching career, where she won eight conference, five sectional and one regional titles at Frankfort by persuading her players to buy into an intense attention to the details.

Just 21 matches into her collegiate coaching career, Hayes’ reliance on those same principles has Indiana University Kokomo’s fledgling program off to a remarkable start in just its third year of existence. The Cougars entered the week with a 17-4 record, boasting several players who are ranking near the top of the NAIA statistical rankings.

Not bad for a squad that finished 9-25 last season. Hayes looked at .500 as a reasonable goal for this year.

“It’s been extremely exciting and I just couldn’t be more happy and more proud of the girls, because it’s very difficult to walk in and help build a program and be patient,” Hayes said. “And, sometimes those girls who initially start the program aren’t the ones who get to experience the initial stages of success. I’m very excited that, not only have they had to take the bumps and hits by starting the program, but they’re also able to see the rewards of their hard work before they graduate.”

The attention to detail has been evident in the statistics as the team has racked up victories. Hayes said teams typically score 15 points by their own doing in any given set. Those other 10 points come from the mistakes opposing teams make. Her goal has been to reduce that number by half for the Cougars, and the results have been staggering. The squad ranks in the top 50 nationally in seven different categories, including fourth in service aces (161), eighth in total kills (939), ninth in assists (846), 20th in digs (1,115), 27th in blocks (133.5), 29th in aces per game (1.96) and 49th in hitting percentage (.212).

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • Sports briefs for Friday, August 1 The Kokomo Post 6 baseballers survived a high-scoring affair with Floyd's Knob Post 42 on Thursday to emerge with a 12-10 victory and become one of the final four squads alive in the American Legion state tournament.

    August 1, 2014

  • Fans fuel Colts at night practice Early in Thursday night's practice at Anderson University, Indianapolis Colts tight end Coby Fleener found himself running free behind the defense in 11-on-11 drills.

    July 31, 2014

  • Sports briefs for Thursday, July 31 The Kokomo Post 6 senior baseball team dropped a 7-2 decision to Newburgh Post 44 in the American Legion state finals on Wednesday night.

    July 31, 2014

  • SPL - KT073114 - KT Colts - pic Colts focusing on situational improvement The theme at Anderson University carried over to the field, and the Colts' 14 turnovers were the fewest in the NFL last year.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT073114 - Brett Bowman column - column sig BOWMAN: Lambert captures McIntire event In the first-running of the Dwayne McIntire Memorial Race, Jordan Lambert beat a stellar field to claim the win Saturday night at the Miami County Speedway in Peru.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT073014 - Colts camp - pic COLTS: One week of camp in the books The first week of Indianapolis Colts training camp has ended at Anderson University, and the players received their first day off Tuesday. Practice resumes today with the daily morning walkthrough followed by a public session scheduled to begin at 1:50 p.m. More than 10,000 fans attended at least one of the first five practices this summer.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • BASEBALL: Sixers surge to win The Kokomo Post 6 senior baseball team scored a thrilling victory over Plymouth Post 27 in the opening round of the American Legion state finals on Tuesday night.

    July 30, 2014

  • SPL - KT073014 - Brett Bowman column - column sig BOWMAN: Gardner knew how to live life What is it about dirt track racing that makes me drop nearly everything and everyone around me to witness a race?

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sports briefs for Wednesday, July 30 The Indiana Smash softball team won the North American All-Sanctioned 12-U World Series on Sunday. The Smash went undefeated in the tournament. Following pool play, the Smash went 5-0 in bracket play, then beat the Lady Lightning for the title.

    July 30, 2014

  • NCAA Concussion Lawsuit-9 [Duplicate] NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules CHICAGO (AP) — The NCAA agreed Tuesday to settle a class-action head-injury lawsuit by creating a $70 million fund to diagnose thousands of current and former college athletes to determine if they suffered brain trauma playing football, hockey, socce

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo