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West Sedona School’s volleyball coach Darren McCormick takes his job very seriously.

West Sedona School eighth-grader Julia Koss goes up to set the ball over the net in a game early this season against Big Park Community School.His job is molding middle school-aged girls into volleyball players who can compete at the highest levels when they get into the Sedona Red Rock High School volleyball program.

“Most of our players have only played one to two years,” McCormick said. “[But] they are doing great despite this — [they have] great attitude and work ethic.”

McCormick is in his second year coaching the team — his first year as head coach — and is also in his second year as a teacher at West Sedona School.

“I come from a background of beach volleyball, and have learned a lot to become head indoor coach,” McCormick said. “I have played volleyball my whole life, and I love coaching the girls.”

He said he would like to see the girls get started learning the fundamentals of volleyball at a younger age — perhaps in fourth or fifth grade — but no such programs currently exist in Sedona.

“The earlier the girls get started with the sport, the more prepared they are for middle school volleyball, which has become very competitive,” he said.

For the full story, please see the Friday, Sept. 13, issue of the Sedona Red Rock News.

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