VIDEO: City College volleyball player takes the lead

Get to know Knights volleyball captain Kally Norvell

City volleyball player Kally Norvell

Gustavo Celarie

Kally Norvell sets the volleyball for a Knights player. City College Knights courtesy photo

Will Mauriz, Sports Editor

On road trips with the San Diego City College volleyball team, sophomore biochemistry major Kally Norvell can usually be found diligently studying in the Knights team van despite the bumps and swerves of the road.

The Knights (4-8, 2-4 in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference South) haven’t had the smoothest ride through the fall season.

But Norvell has been a consistent leader, the only returning player for her second collegiate season and a co-captain of the team.

“Having one sophomore is truly a huge thing for us, in that we have somebody who can attest to following the system and being successful,”  Coach Dede Bodnar said.

Norvell is a utility player on the court, which means she can play multiple positions while balancing life as a working athlete with the high demands of her major.

Norvell works part-time for her alma mater, Maranatha Christian.

With campus closed last season and through this preseason, Norvell didn’t miss a Zoom workout session, whether it was weight training or solo drills. Covid-19 protocols prevented team workouts or conventional practice until right before the season started.

Now halfway through the season, the team has struggled with injuries and players have quit.

The 5-foot-6 Norvell has stepped up to play other positions like defensive specialist and even outside hitter.

“This is not an easy feat at the collegiate level,” Bodnar said, “to play multiple positions and excel.”

But Norvell remains committed to pushing forward as the team leader.

“Being the big sister to all the other girls, being there for them,”  Norvell said, “we just came out of a little dip in our season, but we are fighting our way back.”

The improvements she’s made as a player have helped the development of team unity and communication, according to Bodnar.

“The connections with my teammates have been so character building and the different life skills and time management skills my coaches have taught me have been so enlightening,” Norvell said.

Norvell’s future plan is to transfer to a four-year university and follow her passion for science.

“I would love to play on because volleyball is one my big loves in my life but if not collegiately, at a club level,” Norvell said.

The Knight’s next game is on Oct.15 against Southwestern College (4-11) at 5 p.m.

City will return home on Oct. 20 to play Imperial Valley (7-7). The match will be live-streamed on YouTube.