Mendham High School Volleyball: MHS Volleyball History

Team Achievements

2009 

Livingston Tournament Champions

North Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) National Division Champions

Morris County Tournament Finalists

2008 

Morris County Tournament Champions

Iron Hills Conference Champions

Livingston Tournament Champions

Garden State Invitational Finalists

NJSIAA Group 3 State Tournament Semi Finalists

2007 

NJSIAA Group 3 State Tournament Finalists

2005 

Iron Hills Conference Champions

2004 

Iron Hills Conference Champions

 



The History of MHS Volleyball
PRESENTATION TO FIRST MHS VOLLEYBALL TEAM BANQUET
November 19, 2002                               By Susan McAdam

Clare Button and I started this crusade to get a volleyball program at Mendham High School a few months after meeting on the tennis courts in 2000. My family and I had recently moved from Texas where my daughter, Jen, had learned and played volleyball as a 7th grader. I was disappointed that there wouldn’t be a suitable fall sport for her here. Clare had been a University of Rochester player and loved the sport, hoping her two girls might play someday.

We spent the 2000-2001 school year waging our campaign of passionate persuasion. We sought to impart our whole-hearted belief that volleyball would be a terrific complimentary addition to the fall line up of sports for girls, and that there were indeed girls who wanted and needed to play. We had meetings and phone conversations, wrote letters to Mendham High School administrators, wrote articles for the local newspaper, communicated with middle school PE teachers, put notices in the PTO newsletter, sought the advice and expertise of George Mon at Powerzone Volleyball and Beth Grasso, volleyball coach at West Morris Central, and generally tried to publicize and gain support for our efforts. Although the initial reaction from the school was lukewarm at best, before the end of that school year we had the commitment of the MHS athletic department to include volleyball in the 2002-2003 budget. I believe the factors of growth in student population and expansion of other volleyball programs in Morris County contributed to the acceptance of our proposition to develop a volleyball program at Mendham High School. It was no small victory, but was also just the beginning of a greater task ahead.

In late spring 2001 the MHS Athletic Director, Jim Baglin, asked Bob Acker, a math teacher and freshmen lacrosse coach, to proceed with developing the program. Bob and I met several times to plan our strategies and tactics (which is what you do with a West Point graduate) for stimulating interest and spreading the word among the students. Bob put out announcements, posted flyers, had meetings, made lists, handed out information and preached the gospel of volleyball to any student who might be interested. In the fall 2001 we had informal volleyball practice sessions twice a week in the gym. During the winter a small group had a weekly practice and instruction session at Powerzone with George Mon. In May 2002 we prepared a mailing for all of the incoming freshmen girls describing the new volleyball program.

Finally in late August we had an outstanding camp at the high school run by Gold Medal Squared. It was a week of superb instruction and hard work which created a skill-set foundation that we have built on during our first season. Our new volleyball net system was fully installed during tryouts the week before school started and we were able to distribute brand new jerseys to 24 girls. We had a total of 26 players included in our Red and Blue teams at the junior varsity level; Mr. Acker coached the Red team and I coached the Blue team. We focused our efforts on the experience of high school match play, as well as continual efforts to improve and upgrade skills. All the girls have played and all have vastly improved. In the fall 2003 we are excited to be implementing our varsity level team.

Clare and I continue to provide our support to volleyball programs in the Mendham/Chester communities. In April 2001 we offered our first volleyball clinic for middle school students. That was followed by the Mendham Chester Volleyball Club program which has been offered the past 2 falls through the Mendham Township Recreation Department. We have just offered our assistance to officiate for the Mendham Township Middle School volleyball tournament which is held every February. We are willing to devote our time and energy to these community projects because we believe that early exposure to the sport as well as skill development will encourage athletes to consider volleyball as their sport and ultimately benefit the high school program.

What started as a dream for a few girls has become the reality for many. What was started by 2 individuals has been enthusiastically embraced by schools, organizations, and families within our community. I believe that volleyball has become part of the fabric of fall sports at Mendham High School. We can now dream that someday a bright red volleyball banner will proudly hang in the school gymnasium signifying our accomplishments
…………….someday.                      Believing is 90% of doing.