Alexus Mercer #15

Hey Cougar Fans! It’s your favorite freshman right side hitter, Alexus Mercer, writing the blog for the week!

These last two weeks have been nice and cozy without tournaments, but this weekend we are very excited to get back in it and take care of business. We will go up against Bradley, Western, and Chicago State. We are ready to compete at a higher level and test both our strengths and weaknesses. After this week we have one last tournament and I got to say I am very sad. This season has been a great one and I am not ready to see our sophomores leave! This past year I have developed amazing friendships and learned so much through the leadership of the older girls. SO with that being said, I am dedicating my blog to the sophomores.

Morgan, thanks for being an understanding setter that took time to work with me and understand/ connect with me as a hitter. Good luck next year!

Paige, thanks for the laughs and the elbows in my side when I am trying to set up a block. Wouldn’t want anyone else to step on me so much and give me so many bruises!

Brooke, thanks for being hilarious and being that one person to always laugh at my dumb jokes. Grateful that we became buds and I am very appreciative of our secret handshake! I don’t want to see you leave us but I know you are going to do amazing next year at your new school. Good luck.

Darian, thanks for helping me grow as an individual and as a player. I love your brutal honesty (even when I didn’t) and I love the connection we have on the court. Thank you for being my person.

Emily, thank you for becoming one of my best friends this season. Thank you for the laughs, the tears, and the talks about all our frustrations. Thank you for talking things out with me and the constant encouragement. Thank you for listening.

Grace, thanks for being my bud and other right side. I am going to miss our talks on the sidelines and the way we connected over our position.

Whitney, thanks for your endless amount of energy and advice. You were absolutely amazing this season with helping myself and other girls work stuff out mentally and physically on the court.

Thank you sophomores for everything that you each brought individually to this team! Thank you guys for the good times and the bad times! Thank you guys for being my second family.  Excited for the time we all have left together this next couple weeks. Much love,

img_0355         Alexus Mercer #15

Taylor Shaw #4

Hi cougar fans!! This is freshman outside hitter Taylor Shaw writing the blog for the week! As you read in last weeks blog by Paige Pasley we competed in a tournament at UIS. We have these next two weekends off which is really nice because it gives us time to spend with our family. I’m especially excited because I will be welcoming a new baby cousin into the world this coming week.

But we’ve been busy in the gym preparing for the spring tournaments! The weekend after Easter we will be traveling to Bradley to compete in another tournament. We will be playing Bradley, Western and Chicago State. These teams are all at a higher level than us so this will be good a good test of our skills. After The Bradley tournament we only have one more tournament and then before we know it, it’ll be summer!

Last time I talked to everyone I was undecided for my field of study. But I am happy to say that I have finally decided on Nursing. I specifically want to go into Neonatal nursing but there is a long road ahead of me before I get there! Can’t wait to talk to you guys again soon! GO COUGS!

Paige Pasley # 8

HELLO COUGAR FANS! Its been awhile since I have talked to you last. This is sophomore middle hitter Paige Pasley! It has been such a busy year so far, I can hardly believe that it is April! The team and I have been in the gym a lot more lately preparing for our spring tournament games. Practice has been really fun lately.

This past weekend we traveled to UIS- University of Illinois-Springfield. We got a chance to play some really good competition. We played 5 matches that were each 30 minutes long. We played against Illinois Wesleyan, McKendree, UIS, Lindenwood and then UIS again. It was a fun day full of challenges and I think that we did pretty well playing against tough competition! During the spring time is when we get to play bigger schools and harder competition so it makes for a really good challenge for us to play against.

Since I have made the decision to not continue playing volleyball after this year I am really trying to soak up my last few months of the season! I will actually still be at ICC for another whole finishing up the Dental Hygiene program that I just started this past fall! I am really enjoying dental hygiene and am excited about what I have chosen to do. Feel free to make an appointment with ICCs Dental Hygiene Clinic and ask for me!

It has been so fun getting to tell you all about my adventures here at ICC, thanks for being the best fans around!

Paige Pasley #8

Morgan Twing #7

Hey Cougar Fans! This is sophomore setter, Morgan Twing, writing the blog for the week. Since our season ended, I have been trying to find another school to continue playing volleyball. After a long and stressful recruiting process, I have found a great school for me! I will be attending St. Ambrose University in Davenport, Iowa to continue playing volleyball and join their pre-law program. This school is actually very close to my home town, Rock Island, only about 10 minutes. For the first semester, I will be living at home, which may not sound very exciting, but I will be saving a lot of money and it will be worth it in the long run. My sister will also be living at home for a year until she goes to graduate school, so it will be a full house again! I can’t wait to share all my clothes with her again *sarcasm*.

This was our first week back from Spring Break and we hit the gym hard in preparation for our first spring tournament. Our schedule now will be more serious since we are playing matches again and this is what it will typically look like:

  • Mon/Wed: Weights followed by practice
  • Tues/Thurs: Practice
  • Friday: Practice and yoga

After practicing really hard this week, we finally were able to compete. On Saturday morning we left ICC at 6:45 a.m. and headed to Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, IL. Since it is spring season, things are a little different. This tournament’s layout consisted of each team playing 6 matches. Each match consisted of two sets to 25 points within a 45 minute time frame. Our first match we played Chicago State University. This was by far the best match we played all day, and we took them two sets to none. After that we played NIU’s alumni team. After winning the first set we lost our momentum and lost the second. Next match we played Illinois State University, probably the best team there. My sister just finished her senior season for ISU so unfortunately she could not play, but how cool would it have been if we could have played each other? We fell two sets to none against them. After our lunch break we lost to Winona University, Lewis University, and split with McHenry College. We had some ups and downs on the day for sure, but only having 9 players and a couple people in completely new positions, we battled hard. We have a lot to work to do these next couple weeks. Overall, it was a fun weekend and another learning experience.

Coach Sue

One last thing, Saturday was Sue’s birthday!!!! Thanks for reading the blog 🙂

Morgan Twing, #7

Darian Baldwin #11

Hello Cougar fans! Guess what this week is? SPRING BREAK!

The only sad part about being eight weeks into the semester is that our eight week volleyball class and weight lifting class has ended. Our team is required to take these two classes taught by our assistant coach, Paloma Simundic. There were two men that also joined us in the volleyball class. We can’t thank them enough for being a part of it! TK and Jameson challenged our hitter and defensive specialist because of their blocking and hitting abilities. Everyone has such a great time competing with and against each other. We also love to see the progress we have made in the weight room. The best part about lifting and workouts are the results. I think we can all agree that our biggest accomplishment is the number of push-ups we are able to do now! Though our classes are over, we will still be hitting the gym and weight room. Practices will be throughout the week to prepare us for our upcoming spring tournaments. We will start off our spring season by a tournament at Northern Illinois University on March 25th! We will be competing against Chicago State, Illinois State, Lewis, McHenry, and Winona. This tournament will be great competition! 

I have exciting news for you all! I visited University of Saint Francis in Joliet Illinois on February 27th. The visit started off by a campus tour. The buildings are absolutely beautiful! Next was a meeting with an advisor. The tour guide and advisor were so incredibly helpful the entire time we were with them. Then I met with Coach Currier and Coach Cox for lunch and then practice. I loved getting to meet with the players and it was even better that I was able to practice with them. I left the campus knowing that University of Saint Francis was the school for me. I am so blessed to say that I will be continuing my academic and athletic career as a Fighting Saint! 

~ Darian #11

Whitney Nichols #14

Cougar fans! What’s up? Whitney Nichols here to you the 411 on what’s been happening lately. As many of you all know, we are currently in Spring season, which consists of practices, weights, and of course tournaments. As some of you may not know, I dislocated my left knee while playing Parkland back on October 5th. I had surgery December 9th and I’m busy as work with physical therapy and gaining back my strength. It was a scary feeling not knowing if I could ever play the sport I love but found out in late January that I would be able to play again. YAY!

So, on February 14th… Valentine’s Day, I committed to Greenville College to continue my academic and athletic career. Let’s just say, that was a pretty great feeling. Due to my knee injury, I unfortunately had to forgo Spring season. But, I’ve learned so much about the game by just sitting there and watching my team play. I’ve learned so much more about the little things of the game of volleyball. It’s amazing what we can learn while were not on the court, playing.


Besides a demanding schedule in the classroom, I also have a demanding schedule in the show barn. Yes, I’m a livestock girl. I was born and raised on a pig farm, and I couldn’t imagine my life without those four-legged animals. It’s a year-round job and it definitely keeps me on my toes. From witnessing their birth, to watching them grow up is an amazing site to see. I’m thankful every day for the pig industry because it has taught me many life lessons, not to mention, I met my best friend through the pig industry. This summer will be full of pig shows, strength training for my knee, and of course volleyball.

As always, Go Cougs!

Whit #14

Leah TerBush #6

Hey Cougar fans!

It’s Leah and wow have we been busy around here.  Since this is the Spring I am taking a bigger class load than I do in the fall.   Most of us do this because we’re not on the road as much but that means more study time!  Although the schedule as an athlete isn’t as demanding in the spring as it is in the fall, it still takes a lot of work.

This past Thursday, Brooke Jacobs, Morgan, Taylor, and I along with 55 other student athletes got recognized for earning academic honors in the fall semester.  Brooke and Taylor earned the Athletic Director’s Award, Morgan earned the Dean’s List Award, and I earned the President’s List Award.  It was super exciting to see our hard work payoff.  Along with that, this past Tuesday I got the opportunity to be inducted into the Sigma Kappa Delta which is an English honor society here at ICC.  This again was refreshing to see hard work paying off and has tremendous benefits for wherever I choose to go after ICC.  For example, an activity that I would participate in is the Adopt-A-Highway which is one way that the organization and SKD members can give happiness back to the community.

On another note, we still have our volleyball class Mondays and Wednesdays and it’s been so fun!  Especially because it’s awesome to see everyone improving and getting stronger throughout the weeks.  This makes me so excited for the upcoming spring tournaments.  On Tuesdays and Thursdays we have practice and that’s always a good time for us to all be able to play as a team since not everyone is able to make it to the class on Mondays and Wednesdays.  Whitney and Emily have been such huge help whenever Sue is the only coach in practice on Tuesday and Thursday.  Although, I wish they were out on the court playing with us I know they’ll be motivating us on the sideline.

Intramurals started back up a couple of weeks ago so some of the players stick around after practice and officiate the games and even occasionally play.  It’s always fun to watch the students who play get involved and have fun doing it!

With Spring break coming up the first half of the semester is almost done which means we’ll be having midterms soon!  It’s crazy to think that spring competition is about to start back up and challenge and push us all in ways that will only better us in the upcoming season.  I’m so excited to see what all we accomplish this spring!!  Wish us luck!

Talk to you soon!

Leah TerBush #6