Being part of a sports team means being part of a family. Now in the midst of her senior volleyball campaign, Mya VanDuyne, a 2016 Newark graduate, has made many fond memories with her Alfred State family.

“The past four years of being a part of Alfred State volleyball has given me a family away from home,” VanDuyne said. “This program has impacted my college experience in giving me opportunities to be involved in athletics and the Alfred State community. I’ve learned to take on more responsibilities each year and help be a leader for my teammates. Being part of this program has not only impacted me as an athlete but as an individual.”

After losing 3-1 on Wednesday to Pitt-Bradford, the Pioneers have an overall record of 6-7. VanDuyne says if the team wants to get over the .500 mark, the players need to improve their communication skills on the court.

“Entering a new conference this year has brought some new competition,” she added. “Having a fairly young and timid team, we have to improve on our communication skills and taking risks with finishing points. Our team has a lot of potential and needs to find ways to utilize our volleyball IQ during games.”

Tomorrow the Pioneers will look to even up their record as they travel to Pittsburgh to take on La Roche in an Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference matchup.

“A team goal we set as a standard is earning 17 points per game,” VanDuyne said. “You earn a point through attacks, aces, and blocks — not from the other team’s own mistakes. An individual goal I have set for the remainder of the season is I would like to be hitting no less than a .250 every match. There’s many factors to the amount of attempts I get to hit per match, but utilizing game IQ to make the most of the attempts I’m given is important.”

At Newark, VanDuyne was a four-year member of the varsity volleyball team. In 2013 she earned Finger Lakes East Second Team All-Star honors, while nabbing first-team honors in 2014 and 2015.

She will be graduating with a degree in Vet Tech and Business and hopes to work close to home.

“After graduation I will be signing up to take my licensing exam for vet tech (VTNE) and planning to stay close to home, hopefully working in a small animal clinic,” she said.

Some other local athletes playing in college this fall:

Omar Godoy (Trumansburg ’18, a member of the Tri-Town football team) is an offensive lineman for the Salve Regina football team.

Austin Walden (Canandaigua ’16) is a fullback for the Alfred University football team.

Sarah Raeman (Canandaigua ’17) is a member of the Alfred University volleyball team.

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