UIS Tourney

This past week was game week, which we have been waiting for (what seems like) forever! We spent our practices this week fine-tuning a few skills and working on game-like play to prepare for our Saturday tournament at University of Illinois Springfield.


At this tournament, we got to see a lot of good competition such as UIS, Parkland, IUW, and Missouri S&T. All of the scores for each set were very close, and we persevered through a lot of adversity. I think the competition last weekend helped us identify what we need to improve on, and what we already have improved on. It was all in all a positive, learning experience!


Summer volleyball camps are just around the corner, starting as soon an June 11th! ICC offers 4th-6th grade, 7th-8th grade, and 9th-12th grade all skills camp sessions as well as Sue Sinclair’s specialty camps that include serve receive/defense, setting, and hitting/blocking sessions! I encourage you guys to spread the word about our camps and bring all your friends! I learned A LOT from attending these camps when I was younger. They are a great way to improve any skill, and you get to meet past, current, and future ICC volleyball players and coaches!  Here is the website link with more information and registration information: ICCATHELTICS
We look forward to seeing you all this summer!! 🙂
Brooke Gardner #13

Meet Daisy

Hey Cougar fans! This is Haley Peterson #14, for your Cougars! We are currently working hard in the weight room and on the court to get ready for our three tournaments in April.


Last semester flew by and this semester is moving quickly too! This semester I have a lot more classes within my major of Horticulture Landscape Management. The classes have given me a chance to learn more skills within the Horticulture field. I have a few classes at the Land Lab on campus which has multiple greenhouses and many types of gardens such as a Vegetable, Butterfly, Japanese, and Master gardens. These classes give me a chance to do the hands on work and learn new skills such as plant identification, pruning, and construction of retaining walls and paver walkways. We will soon be learning wood construction for landscaping. I am excited to learn new skills within this field and cannot wait to begin to apply what I am learning.


Last week we added a new addition to our cougar family- a cute 9 week old Boxer named Daisy. Daisy is so cute and she snuggles with all of us when she is exhausted from all the running, attention, and fun she has with everyone. There are times when she gets the chance to run with us and even chase a volleyball. She is a wonderful addition to our family and to quote TR, “she may be a Boxer on paper, but is a Cougar in our hearts.”

This week we will be gearing up for our first tournament of the spring season. Next weekend we will be going to the University of Illinois Springfield for a great day of competition. Check out next week’s blog to find out about the tournament!

Until next time!

Haley Peterson #14

I love this sport!

Freshman Jess #12, here to discuss some of the wonderful things that have been going on lately! First I would like to wish everyone a wonderful Easter and lovely beginning of Spring! A new and exciting personal thing for me to share is that over Christmas break I received a Nikon camera so that I can take professional pictures of my teammates, fellow athletes, and friends. One day I would be super excited to share my photos with everyone! 

Ever since I was a freshman in high school, I have played non stop volleyball. I went from school season, to club season and back again. I was sad to think that in college there was only one season, but boy was I wrong! There is fall season, spring season, and sand season. We have been practicing extra hard the past few weeks as we get ready for our spring season.

Within the next month we will be traveling to various tournaments to better ourselves as athletes. Even though we take our work very seriously, we also know how to have fun while we do it. The week before spring break we had different themed practices to make each other smile and laugh. My favorite day would be the last practice of the week where we picked our favorite movie characters to dress up as. If you want to see all of our themed practices we posted them on our instagram @iccvolleyball check it out!

The next few weeks we have our work cut out for us, but I am excited to get the season started. Be sure to keep yourself updated on how we are doing throughout the spring season. Until the next time I talk to you always remember to keep all your cougars in your hearts!

Talk to you soon, Jess Norris #12

The glass is half full

Hey Cougar fans! It’s Jackie Beaver, #8 for your lady cougars! Last time I talked to you guys was at the end of August. I had mentioned that I was undecided in my study and that I was looking for ICC to help me on my path. My first semester did that for sure! I know now that I will be transferring on to majoring in social work with a minor in psychology! My first semester flew quickly but was a complete blast! Second semester is going by even faster! It’s hard to believe that spring season is here and we are reaching the end of second semester! I would say my biggest piece of advice for someone new in college would be to stay on top of your work. You might think that you have forever to get an assignment done, but before you know it, the due date is here. First semester did come with challenges, but I pulled through academically ending the semester with a 3.6 GPA. I was not the only cougar to accomplish this, Hailey Peterson and Jess Norris, finished first semester with outstanding GPAs as well. We were recognized for our achievements and were inducted into the honors society Phi Theta Kappa.


My christmas break was an exciting one! I flew for the first time and got to see my oldest sisters new house in Henderson, Nevada. While I was out there I visited many sights of Las Vegas! My favorite one was the Secret Garden and Dolphin habitat! Along with exploring the strip, I did lots of hiking out there. The highest mountain I walked up was Frenchman Mountain. At the highest point, I was 4,031 feet! Looking from the top was absolutely gorgeous, you could see for miles. On top of my exciting trip to my sister, I welcomed into this world my niece, Josette. Josette was born at 5:18 AM on January 3. Josette is finally smiling and loves to have her feet tickled! She is an absolute blessing to have and wouldn’t change anything about her.

Although its March and there is snow on the ground, the team is thrilled to be in the gym and working hard for upcoming tournaments. I have loved every opportunity I have had to get into the gym and weight room to improve for next season! We are pushing ourselves both mentally and physically to be the best we can. We have been focusing on the positives and recognizing how to pick up ourselves along with teammates when a challenge arises. On top of pushing ourselves on the court we have all been pushing ourselves in the weight room. The strength we are building up now will be see in our fast approaching tournaments. We have had to change some spots on the court and that is opening a world of opportunities for this team!

Till next time, Jackie Beaver #8

The VB Cougar Family

Hi Everyone! I’m Back, Amanda Pratt, freshman outside hitter.  I have one semester under my belt as a Cougar volleyball player and my second semester is flying by! I have looked forward to spring season but since we are here now, let’s look back.  One year ago I was trying to decide which college to attend. One close to home? One distant from friends? To play volleyball or not? ICC was a perfect choice for me. At seventeen I made the decision not only to attend college at ICC, but to become part of the Cougar VB family.  As a Cougar, I have been blessed with the opportunity to make friends, push myself independently, and even return home when I want.  

As a senior in high school, I never realized how much I had taken for granted seeing my family (and dog).  I was thankful for all of the support my teammates had provided me this past season. I found out that  my greatest support system was an hour drive home. Thankfully, I had made the decision to attend a college only an hour from family and could check in frequently.  

So, for seniors who are making those important decisions, Such as which college to attend… Be sure to visit the campuses and teams you are interested in, make a list of the pros and cons, and ask those closest to you for their advice.  The best fit is different for each of us. I’m glad I found a good fit. College is a new chapter in life, a place where you can continue to learn and make new friendships.  Best of luck!

~ Amanda Pratt #7

Building skill and strength

Hello Cougar Fans! Freshman, Outside Hitter, Mary O’Brien here! We are almost one month into our Spring season and I couldn’t be more excited to be back and practicing again! It feels so good to be back on the court with the team, doing what we do best.


This year has flown by, I can’t believe we are already into the Spring Semester! The Spring season gives us a great opportunity to not only work on our volleyball skills but also build strength in the weight room. This past month we have been focused on gaining strength and working on technique. I love seeing the improvement in each individual lift as we continue to work and get better. With the help of TR and our strength coach, Ryan Camp, I can personally say that your Lady Cougars will be looking stronger than ever!


Along with weight training, we also do HIIT workouts also known as H​igh I​ntensity Interval T​raining. Each week two players are chosen to create a HIIT workout of their own, and then lead the workout in front of the whole team. This week Taylor Shaw and I will be leading the HIIT training! Tay and I are excited to create our own workout and put our twist on it. I love the variation in our training, it makes it more enjoyable.


This month we celebrated national girls and women in sports day. This is a month long celebration used to acknowledge the accomplishments of female athletes and woman who were at the forefront, pushing for equality in sports. To honor some special local women who helped to pave the way for women in sports, we invited back Patty Speitz the first NJCAA National tournament MVP ever. What an amazing accomplishment and inspiring woman!

New Technology

Hey cougar fans, this is Mallory here! It feels like it’s been so long since I blogged last. We have been really busy training since we came back in January. Spring season is a little less intense but still really important. Besides training, I’m really thankful for all the friendships that I have made so far. I am really trying to cherish the time that I have left with the sophomores as well before they leave. I’m glad that we still have spring season to play together.

We have also been using a lot of new technology during practice that really helps us. The hitters use bands that track how many times they jump and even how high they jump. I and the other setters use the iPad and Apple TV to work on our form. It’s really nice that we are given the opportunity to use this technology is different ways.

Lastly, I applied to the dental hygiene program at ICC that I talked about in my last blog. I find out if I am accepted into the Fall 2018 program in March so fingers crossed! Classes also went really well for me last semester and I received the honor of Dean’s list.

That’s all for now but I am so excited to blog again next time! Talk to you guys soon!

-Mallory #2