Campbell set to lead BSHS volleyball program
This fall the YMCA on the campus of Bonner Springs High School will be filled with sets, spikes and digs once again as volleyball gets going in full swing for the Bravettes.
They will have a new look this season, and they hope to compete in the powerful Kaw Valley League.
Part of that new look is first-year varsity coach Heather Campbell, who is starting her sixth year at BSHS as a math teacher, and her third year as a member of the volleyball staff. She coached the freshman and junior varsity teams the past two seasons.
“I’m excited to get started,” Campbell said. “We are going to work hard in practice in order to compete with the best teams in our league and state.”
Campbell is a graduate of Mid-America Nazarene University. She played basketball and track and was an All-American hammer and discus thrower on her way to a math education degree in 2003. She has helped coach track at Mid-America since she graduated, even helping one of her hammer throwers advance to the NAIA nationals this past season. Mid-America is canceling its track program this year, so Campbell will coach the Clark Middle School throwers on the track team.
She got her volleyball experience in high school in Garden City. She suited up for the varsity team her freshman and sophomore years, but contributed her junior year. She was a middle hitter on a team that went 36-4, winning 31 straight games at one point before placing fourth at state.
Campbell tore her anterior cruciate ligament while playing basketball during the winter of her junior year and sat out during volleyball her senior year in order to recover from the injury. That was the opportunity that she attributes to her becoming a volleyball coach.
“I was a glorified manager my senior year,” Campbell said. “I was able to watch the coaches and helped run drills. I always knew that I wanted to be a coach and a teacher, so I made the most out of that opportunity. We were not as good of a team that season, so I learned a lot about winning and losing.”
Though she always wanted to be a coach, she never pictured herself as a volleyball coach, but she thinks that she can translate that winning experience from her junior year in high school to the girls that are currently on her team at Bonner Springs.
“I will always remember our successes that season,” Campbell said. “I spent some time at camp talking about what that experience has done for me, and that it is important to work together as a team in order to experience that type of success together.”
For the varsity team, Campbell makes the third coach to hold the position in as many years. Her task to improve upon the team’s record from 2008 will be difficult. The Bravettes graduated five seniors from last year’s team that posted an 8-27 record.
Last season the Bravettes struggled at times to communicate on the floor during matches, but Campbell hopes that the summer camp, open gym and a summer league that allowed the girls to play twice a week will help the team get on the same page.
“At the varsity level you should be able to focus more on the other team, and what you can do to them,” Campbell said. “It is not like the other levels of volleyball where you have to worry so much about your own team and the basics. Hopefully with hard work and discipline you can have time to (polish and fine-tune).”
When she’s not coaching a sport, Campbell stays busy with her family. She has been married to her husband Scott Campbell for six years. Scott is a football coach for Mid-America Nazarene and owns his own remodeling company. They have two girls, McKenzie, 3, and Allison, 1.
“Both (girls) have already been to lots of sporting events and will continue to be at a lot more,” Campbell said. “We joke that they have been to more events than some adults have been in their lifetime. I guess that is the fun with two parents that coach.”