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Saturday, September 23, 2017

Sports

Volleyball serves community following Harvey


Following a road trip to Dallas, the University of Houston Volleyball team offered their services to the community.

The volleyball team stands with former University student Joy Mitchell whose home was effected by Hurricane Harvey. | Courtesy of UH Athletics

The volleyball team looks to regroup after an unprecedented start to their 2017 season. The Cougars were on the road in Dallas when Hurricane Harvey made landfall, forcing them to bunker down and wait out the catastrophic storm.

When the Cougars were able to travel back to Houston, they immediately began volunteering to help those affected by Harvey. Head coach Kaddie Platt pleaded other schools to send donations to UH after men’s basketball head coach Kelvin Sampson’s request received hundreds of shipments.

“I would like to join in and ask all of our friends in the volleyball community to help in any way possible,” Platt wrote in an online letter. “If you would like to donate, please send 20 of your program’s shirts and 10 pairs of shoes in various sizes.”

From helping gut soaked drywall to sorting through donations, the girls were just happy to be back helping the people of Houston.

“It was just exciting to come back and help families,” redshirt junior middle blocker Chenelle Walker said. “I can’t even imagine how this feels.”

Among those in need was 72-year-old retired teacher Joy Mitchell, whose home was flooded and in dire need of repairs.

A former student of Mitchell’s, Tracy Brown, posted a plea for help via Facebook, urging volunteers to come help her prior educator.

The Cougars, along with 300 others, took action to help the former professor mend her home.

“You guys have done more in one hour than we did all day yesterday,” Brown said in Clear Creek Community Church’s article about the team helping out. “I feel incredibly blessed and this isn’t even my house.”

After giving back to the community, the squad is back on campus preparing for its home opener this weekend, the Flo Hyman Collegiate Cup.

The Cougars’ match against Stetson University at 1 p.m. Friday at the Athletics and Alumni Center will serve as the team’s home opener. Other participating schools include McNeese State University and Mississippi State University, and matches come to a close on Saturday.

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