High school boys volleyball: Leaping, shouting, Jenks fires up Lions

2011-03-31T00:00:00Z 2014-07-02T09:37:21Z High school boys volleyball: Leaping, shouting, Jenks fires up LionsMichael J. Craven Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
March 31, 2011 12:00 am  • 

Step into any gymnasium where Scott Jenks is playing volleyball, and one should be able to spot him right away.

The guy with a massive 6-foot-5-inch frame? The guy who jumps high enough to see over the Catalina Mountains?

That is him.

The guy cheering each kill and pumping his fists? Definitely Jenks.

Mountain View's 17-year-old senior is finally nearing the end of his high school tenure, but before he leaves for Cal State-Northridge next year, he'd like to punish a few more who dare to dig one of his spikes.

At a home match Wednesday, Jenks' main victim was Sahuaro libero Adam Shingler.

Shingler did a nice job digging a few out but admitted the velocity with which Jenks hits the ball is a bit intimidating.

The thought going through Shingler's head while preparing to counter a Jenks spike: "Let's just hope it doesn't hit my face. Let's hope I don't die here."

Shingler had the last laugh as Sahuaro pulled off a down-to-the-wire five-set victory to hand Mountain View its first loss, which didn't sit well with Jenks.

Even the loss, Jenks demonstrated his athletic ability, competitiveness and leadership qualities. Here are some examples:

Athleticism. Jenks could not quite answer exactly how high he gets when he jumps to make a slam. But it's high.

He says the last time he checked, he had a vertical leap of about 35 inches, but it could be higher now. He's been able to dunk on a 10-foot basketball rim since his freshman year.

"It's definitely a really big advantage," he said. "When I can get up, and I can get over the blocks, and I can see where the defenders are on the court, I can place my hits in spots that are open."

Of his 19 kills Wednesday, at least 16 were blistering shots. He opened the second set with consecutive kills and had runs of three straight kills in sets three and four.

Competitiveness. After opening the second set with a massive kill, Jenks stormed to the center of the court, exclaiming, "That's what I'm talking about!"

"I really get fired up when I get a big kill because that brings my team in, and they get excited with me, and then it seems to bring our play up a little bit more," Jenks said.

"The atmosphere of the game and the gym just goes up another level."

Leadership. Near the end of the first set, Jenks' Mountain Lions junior teammate Derrick Pollitt served the ball out, giving Sahuaro a 24-20 lead in a set the Cougars won on the next point.

Instead of getting frustrated with Pollitt, Jenks gave him a nod that said, "Don't worry about it," and said "Side out, OK?"

"On the court, if we're down, I always try to encourage everyone to keep playing and play through it," Jenks said. "There are a lot of points in volleyball. If we keep trying and keep our effort up and our heart up, then we'll eventually break through."

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