Screeching Halt: A Retrospective on the MCC Volleyball Team’s Amazing Season

Aaron Petersen, Contributing Writer

All good things must come to an end; nobody knows this better than the Muskegon Community College Volleyball team, but to them, they had hoped that conclusion would come much later than it did.

“I was disappointed for the players’ sake” said head coach Rick Rykse, speaking on his initial reaction to hearing the team wouldn’t be able to go any further into the postseason.

A positive COVID-19 case from the team roster halted all forward momentum the Jayhawks may have had in hopes of making their way to the NJCAA Division II National Championship in Iowa. The team finished with a perfect 16-0 record through all league play.

“This was a group of tremendous people,” said Marty McDermott, Athletic Director as MCC.   “When you get good people, all working towards the same goal, great things can happen.”

To cap off the season, besides having the best record, the Jayhawks finished best in multiple statistics within the MCCAA, whether it be total points throughout the season with 1061, points per set with 18.3, or blocks per set with 2.60.

Numerous Jayhawk players and coaches received multiple awards for their outstanding performance on the court. Head coach Rykse received all MCCAA Co-Coach of the year and All-Western Conference Coach of the year. Outside Hitter Jordyn Carlyle was nominated First-Team NJCAA Division II All-American, the only nominee throughout the MCCAA, to go along with being nominated MCC’s Female Athlete of the Year.

Despite all of the accolades throughout the season, coach Rykse goes into the offseason with an open mind on how his next team will perform in the coming season.

“Each team is different and has the ability to accomplish big things,” he said. “We have the talent to be really good, but until they start playing together as a team, I don’t know how well we’ll play.”

McDermott was much more optimistic about the team’s upcoming season predictions and thoughts. “I would expect us to be challenging for a national tournament berth again,” he concluded.