Volleyball without Cowles


The Storm may be without Cowles this season but remain focused on a conference title.

by Noah Harkness, Staff Reporter

The Simpson College women’s volleyball team recently discovered they might not be playing in Cowles Fieldhouse this season.

Renovations to Cowles were expected to be done at the beginning of October, but the fieldhouse is now not set to open until December. The team has been practicing in alternate locations since the beginning of the preseason.

Head coach KK Palea talked about the adjustment of preseason outside of Cowles.

“We’re practicing at the Indianola YMCA and during pre-season, we practiced at the Des Moines YMCA and Indianola high school. They’ve all been awesome in hosting us,” he said.

Palea had known his team would be without Cowles for the beginning of the season but recently found out it could be the entire season.

“I would say probably three weeks ago we got the bad news. We initially were told we would not be in Cowles until October 1 last spring,” he said.

Palea and Simpson Athletics Director, Marty Bell, have been working to find locations for home games this season.

“Our fallback location currently is Dowling High School. Marty’s been working really hard on finding other places. We’re also in talks with the old AIB school on potentially renting their gymnasium for home games and hopefully conference.” Palea said.

The news about Cowles was disappointing for the team and in particular the seniors. Potentially not getting to finish their collegiate careers in the place they called home for the past three, and for some four years is not easy.

“Obviously they’re sad and upset but I try to remind them that we’re getting it because of their dedication to our program. I think they’re focused on the change that the program is making and the level that I think we’re going to compete at this year,” Palea said.

Lexi Parks is one of the few fifth-year seniors. She talked about her reaction to the news and how she has been adjusting.

“I was surprised when I heard that we wouldn’t get to play in Cowles but also excited that the gym was getting redone,” Parks said. “I know that having to play other places is a sacrifice for us but it’s exciting to see what’s happening and it’s going to be worth it in the long run.”

Parks also mentioned senior night and potentially not getting to play at the place she’s called home the past four years.

“It’s sad because I would love to have my senior night and our last game in the gym. I have so many memories there, but it is exciting and I’m excited to see what the program can do with the new gym,” she said.

Maraya Haynes is another fifth-year senior on the team and talked about her favorite moment in Cowles.

“My favorite moment in Cowles was beating Central last year. The energy in the gym was electric and it was a huge celebration,” she said.

The Storm may be without Cowles this season but remain focused on a conference title.