While the COVID-19 pandemic altered the volleyball season for Amy Lewis and her Dakota College at Bottineau squad, the Virden product took a glass half full approach.
This past school year, the daughter of Colleen and Jason Lewis was in her first season studying and playing at her North Dakota junior college. The pandemic forced the regular fall season to be altered to exhibition matches. The regular season started at the end of January.
“What I enjoyed most was the amount of volleyball I got to play,” Lewis said. “Our season ended up stretching out over the course of most of the year, so I got plenty of reps in as we practice basically whenever we’re not playing.”
A former Virden Collegiate Institute standout, Lewis said at she had to adjust to competing against bigger and smarter opponents in the college ranks. Dakota College head coach Mike Smith said that the 5-foot-9 outside hitter and defensive specialist strikes the ball well and is a good defensive player.
“Amy worked hard all season and is always trying to get better,” Smith said. “It is tough for first-year kids who come in and all of a sudden everyone can play as well as you can. It is tough getting used to not playing as much as you did in high school, but you have to put the work in. Amy never quit and worked hard in practice and took advantage of her opportunities. I expect she will be a bigger contributor this next season. Great attitude and everything you want in a player.”
Lewis also impressed in the classroom. She made the college’s Dean’s List and is a candidate for the National Junior College Athletic Association All-Academic team, which will be announced late this year.
“My profs are amazing,” Lewis said. “I really do enjoy my classes at DCB. I have learned a lot this year and I am excited to go back for year two next year. I am also very fortunate to have had all of my classes in person this year (not online due to COVID) which really helped me as a student.”
Lewis is a pre-pharmacy major. After earning a two-year associate degree at Dakota College at Bottineau, she will continue to pursue her studies at a four-year university.
“I enjoy this field because I love science while I also love the medical side of things, so this major really just ties it all together,” she said. “It is something I really see myself doing.”
She said that her parents have always supported her volleyball career.
“My mom would literally never miss a game,” Lewis said. “This year was a bit different with the border being closed. Unfortunately, they were unable to come down and see me play but they watched all of the live streams. I am always thankful for their undying support of me and my dreams.”