By Jeanne Sager
CALLICOON December 3, 2004 Sabrina Reimer isnt your average all-star.
At 55 3/4, shes short for a volleyball player, that is.
Shes relatively new to the sport a senior at Sullivan West, Reimer has been playing since the school introduced its volleyball program in her eighth grade year.
And she didnt lead her team to a slam bang season in just their second year of varsity play, the Lady Bulldogs were focused on learning more than winning.
So Reimer wasnt expecting the announcement that she was named to this years Section IX All-Star team.
It was shocking, she said with a shrug. There are a lot of good girls out there . . . I didnt think I was up there with them.
Volleyball coaches in the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) beg to differ Reimer has shown star quality on and off the bench this season.
She says it has a lot to do with her team.
She plays golf too, but nothing compares to the camaraderie of the girls on the volleyball squad, working together to keep the ball moving.
I like when everyone is close, everyones working together as a team, she explained.
Its hard to describe, Reimer admitted. Its not so much a contact sport with the other team you really get to work with your team.
Whereas with basketball you have the point guard here and youre on the other end of the court.
Reimer said shes built a strong relationship with the other girls who have come together to build a volleyball empire at Sullivan West especially Marissa Lanese, another of the short girls on the team who has helped her come a long way in just a few years.
The two were the only girls from Sullivan West to join a club volleyball team last winter to stay on top of their game committing to two practices a week all the way in Wallkill.
The experience was intense, but worth it, Reimer said.
We were the shortest girls on the team! she explained with a laugh. That was hard you have to learn to jump very high to block.
But club volleyball took Reimer to a whole new level.
It helped me tremendously, she explained. My serves improved a lot.
I learned the actual positions, she added with a laugh. And I really learned how to hit.
You learn a lot when youre on the lower end of all these girls all these girls have been playing together since they were young, Reimer explained. I dont know what Id have done if Marissa hadnt joined.
The experiences she gained in the club translated over into the school program where Reimer continued to improve throughout the season, helping the Lady Bulldogs win their first match against Tuxedo in a gym with low ceilings a big challenge for any volleyball player.
Now she has dreams of starting her own club volleyball team in college. She has her eye on Salisbury University, a school in Maryland thats near family but in slightly warmer climes.
Theres currently a mens club team at Salisbury, a team her cousin said was a blast to play with. But theres no option for the women something Reimer would like to change.
My hope is that I play in college club, on the team, intramural, whatever. . . she explained.
So how does she plan to fit volleyball into a busy college career?
Time management skills, she said with a laugh. I get that from my dad.
A top student at Sullivan West, Reimer has managed to balance volleyball and golf with her duties at home and membership in the National Honor Society and as class president since the freshman year.
Her latest report card boasted her highest average ever, so even senioritis hasnt gotten the best of this 12th grader.
Reimer said she can thank her parents for their strong support although mother Christine travels a lot for work, shes on the sidelines of every game, and father Craig has his video camera trained on Reimers every move.
Thanks to some late afternoon study halls, Reimers able to leave school early and head home to grab a snack and finish her homework before heading to practice.
And she wouldnt have it any other way.
I need to stay active, she explained. I dont like just sitting around.
Name: Sabrina Reimer
School and grade: Sullivan West High School, 12th grade.
Parents and family: Reimer is the daughter of Craig and Christine Reimer. She has an older sister, Ashley, 21.
Favorite sport: Volleyball
College plans: Reimer already knows she wants to study political science and one day go to law school. She currently has her eye on Salisbury University in Maryland.
Favorite school subject: Science