Photo courtesy of lewisflyers.com
Ryan Coenen has made great strides as a player, putting up double digit kills in all but one game this season.
Joyce Balash, Sports Editor
Redshirt freshman Ryan Coenen is making a huge statement performing as a key player for the Flyers during the beginning of their spring campaign.
After taking a redshirt season his freshman year, Coenen used that year to learn from veteran players and improve his skills. Coenen came back for his second year at Lewis, making his official collegiate volleyball career debut.
Being a first year starter is no easy task, but Coenen is making it look effortless. Playing in every match of the year so far, Coenen has proven to be an offensive threat.
Constantly putting up a high number of kills, having a total of 112 this season and only playing eight matches so far, Coenen has shown he is a force to be reckoned with.
He has been the leader in kills for the Flyers in all but one of the matches played so far this season.
On Jan. 13, Coenen could not be stopped as he added 23 kills for the Flyers, leading them to a five set win against Harvard. It was in this game that he totaled 10 digs, two aces and two blocks.
Not only is Coenen an offensive threat, but his defensive skills are admirable, too. He has added at least one block per match, his personal best of the season being four blocks against Pepperdine. Coenen has put up a total of 32 digs during the season.
Taking a redshirt year is not easy, but it does allow for a lot of growth.
Players miss out on many game touches and the confidence that comes with success on the court. “After redshirting my first year, it gave me time to prepare for what college level volleyball would be like,” Coenen said.
“Each match I try to improve different parts of my game and, in turn, gain confidence every time I’m out on the floor.”
Coenen gives much of his success to the coaching staff. “With how I’ve performed thus far into the season, it stems from the practices all the coaches have put together and formulating drills that will help each player,” he said.
Under head coach Dan Friend, the team has won over 400 games, making a name for themselves in the collegiate volleyball world.
The team is known for its long history of success, having multiple appearances in the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association conference tournament and the national tournament.
Coenen and the Flyers take the court again on Feb. 9 at Ohio State.