Bemidji Volleyball Begins First Season Under Alicia Kriens
The Bemidji Lumberjacks finished last year 14-14 and are led by Alicia Kriens in her first year as head coach. You can expect a smooth transition as Kriens was an assistant under the previous head coach, Teresa Colligan, for the past four seasons, and has coached in the Bemidji community for the past thirteen.
“It makes it a lot easier because we know who she is, we know how she likes to coach, and we’ve all formed a relationship with her,” says senior setter Mikerra Matthews.
“It’s been really nice having her here because she knows how to run things,” says Kenzie Christiansen, a senior middle blocker. “Being [it’s] your senior year…when you’re younger you’re scared to do this, so now you’re like, ‘I’m excited, let’s do this, it’s Alicia,’”.
Kriens says she’s gone to numerous coaches, YouTube videos online, and her new assistants for advice and tips.
“The new coaches that I’m bringing in this season also are like, ‘have you heard of this drill’ and I’m like, ‘No! Could you please set it up!” said Kriens. “Because I am a sponge for that kind of stuff, anything new I will take.”
One thing that’s going to be clear is that this year, things are going to be fast.
“Alicia likes to run things very quick-paced,” says Matthews.
“Quick-paced, lots of running to everything,” says Christiansen.
“Very intense, very high-paced, we get things moving, everybody’s breaking a sweat,” says Rumer Flatness, a senior outside hitter.
“I tell them that two hours is my time. I don’t want them to waste my time and I don’t want to waste their time,” says Kriens. “When we’re in the gym, we’re there to work hard, give it everything we got, we’re going to go fast, we’re going to go quick because we want to get out of the gym.”
That speed will help on the court to compensate for the size and power that graduated last year.
“We have to work on getting a quicker offense because we don’t have as many of the power hitters so the quicker we run the more we’ll throw them off,” says Flatness.
“We have a lot of versatile players so we’ll be put everywhere and I know we’ll give forth a good effort,” adds Matthews.
“We can go really far on that, defense wins the majority of your games and if you have hitters that are just smart with the ball, we can be really successful,” says Kriens.