Athletes travel cross country with club volleyball team

Brooke Womack
Staff Writer

Walking out onto her beach view balcony at six in the morning, senior Phoenix Steele saw something the West Coast citizens only dream of, the sun rising over the ocean.

While most of us were stuck inside the house due to Covid, Steele and senior Chloe Bierbrauer were traveling on plans to South Carolina to play for their club volleyball team. 

This was an unusual thing for the volleyball team, the furthest they had traveled before was to Texas.  However, that was an annual event the club did.  In order to play, the girls willingly traveled all the way across the country which is not an easy task during the pandemic.

While in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina both girls found themselves infatuated with the community and the opportunity to play the sport they love.

“I loved the environment there, especially all the cute little beach shops!” Bierbrauer said.  Myrtle Beach remained mostly open, allowing the girls to enter more businesses.  “It was nice to have the chance to walk around with my teammates and go do stuff with them,” Steele said.

The weather in Myrtle Beach was also much nicer than the weather in Oregon.  The high seventies and the sun in the sky was perfect for a day of walking around.  

“It was nice enough to walk around on the beach which I’m so thankful for.  I can’t imagine what it would have been like if it was rainy,” Bierbrauer said.

Apart from the sunny skies, the club volleyball team they play for did well in the south, despite not having many practices before the tournament.  

“We ended up taking third in the gold bracket, which meant we got third place out of all the teams there,” Steele said.

Although the girls were able to play, rules due to the Covid guidelines were implemented into the tournament.  

“There were many guidelines in the tournament.  We couldn’t shake hands with the other team and if you weren’t playing on the court you had to have a mask on.  They also had us stay on the same side of the court during the entire game,” Bierbrauer said.

While off the court Steele found herself exploring a few of the many tourist attractions.  

“There was a giant aquarium where they were letting people pet Stingrays!  Right next to the aquarium was this really cool dinosaur park that we got to look at too,” she said.

Both girls have plans to go back to the beach if the opportunity ever arises.

“Even though it was cold in the mornings I’d definitely get up to watch the sunrise again,” Bierbrauer said.

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