Sophomore Jenalle Beaman, from Laffyette, Ind., originally heard about Hillsdale College through its volleyball camp. She said that when she came for the first time it was in the fall, and she fell in love with the campus. She has been playing volleyball since sixth grade, and plays as a hitter on the Hillsdale volleyball team. She was just named North Division GLIAC volleyball player of the week.
Why did you first start playing volleyball?
I started playing with a travel team. I was a setter on the team — I did that through middle school as well — then in high school they moved me to the position of hitter.
You are a leftie. How does this contribute to your game?
It’s really hard hitting outside — those hitters are usually all righties. It does give me an advantage when balls are set too far, however. I can get around the whole ball without as much difficulty as a right-handed hitter.
How do you balance sports with Hillsdale academics?
Our team really makes school a priority. Whenever I’m not at volleyball practice, I’m doing schoolwork. It is volleyball, school, eat. If one of us has a test, the team is really understanding and will help you through it.
You are known for your high jumps. To what do you attribute this strength?
Beginning high school and at the end of middle school I hit [a growth] spurt and my hitting got really good. I play back row too, but I love hitting.
What is a special talent or hobby you have outside of volleyball?
I like to doodle. I draw caricatures of people — I did that all through high school too. I draw them of the volleyball girls with funny sayings.
Where is your favorite place to study?
The library. It secludes me from stress and school. I like it where it is quiet — it is easier for me to focus when there is nothing but silence.
You’ve played volleyball for most of your life and have been a part of a couple different teams. What is special about the Hillsdale volleyball team?
We are all very close and are so similar. Most teams have drama and all that — with this team I feel like there is no drama. We laugh a lot. Our team is a team where everyone improves, so it’s not like we’re just going to stay where we are. We are always wanting to improve and willing to improve.
How often do you work out and practice?
[In season] four hours every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Three hours on Tuesday and Thursday.
What game are you most looking forward to this season?
I was definitely looking forward to the Northwood game. We played them a few weeks ago and I’m looking forward to playing them again. We were so close: down 21 to 24, then we came back up 25 to 25. We stayed neck and neck until they won 28 – 26. That’s the team I am excited to play again — I want to crush them and prove we definitely had the advantage there and we could have done it.