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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

Aug. 26, 2009

Laira's Letter: Meet Laira

Laira Akin, Sophomore, S/OH, Volleyball

Greetings Bearcat Volleyball fans! I'm glad you've chosen to read up about your favorite volleyball team. I'm Laira, a redshirt freshman on the team this year. I am originally from Blue Springs, Mo., about two hours south of Maryville. I transferred here this year from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis. I must say I am very glad to be back within the Missouri state lines. I am a setter on the team, the easiest way to describe a setter is that I am similar to the quarterback on a football team. It's my job to make all the hitters on my team look good, which is very easy to do on this team!

But enough about me, you came on here to read about our team - not just me! Well, as Paige mentioned in her last update we have been doing a lot of team bonding as part of preseason this year with team dinners being a big part of that. I'm not sure what it is, but there's nothing like food to bring 16 hungry girls together for some good team building.

My group which consisted of myself, Minka, Monica (Mo), Amber Guthrie, Wendy, and Andrea Potter, were the hosts of the final team dinner. As Paige mentioned, the earlier groups had all produced very good meals leaving us all very full! We knew that we needed to hit a home run for our teammates to be impressed. Well, after a small, but scary oil fire on the stove which was calmly and quickly put out by us (ok quickly, maybe not calmly) by using pancake mix since we didn't have flour. At least we can always say things are exciting with the volleyball team. In the end, we made teriyaki chicken stir-fry, with cookies and ice cream for dessert. I think we blew the competition out of the water, but I might be biased :) You'll have to ask my teammates for a final verdict.

This week we were going up to Council Bluffs, Iowa, to scrimmage another team to get prepared for our opening weekend in Memphis. Minka and I came well prepared for the van trip. We were well stocked with snacks and eager to test out our new lunch boxes, Jonas Brothers for her and Transformers for myself (yes, I know it's silly but we're fun people!). The scrimmage went very well. The team was much improved from our last outing with Rockhurst, which is very encouraging because to be able to make adjustments that quickly means our team is moving in the right direction and it's gonna be a very successful season!

I must say I'm excited for school to start, I know I'm crazy :) and I can't wait for the season to start, although the 9-hour bus ride to Memphis isn't something I'm counting down the hours to, but Minka and I will have our trusty lunch boxes with us don't you worry!

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it! Until next time,

Laira #3

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468