Ainam’s Return

By Jeremy McDonald

SALEM, Ore.–  Coming off a successful freshman year with the McKay softball team, the now-senior Anesia Ainam was looking to carry that momentum over to her first season playing Varsity with the Scots Volleyball team.

The wear-and-tear on her knee from softball going into volleyball put a lot of strain on the ligament as she felt something was off in the early part of the season.  It was following their home game with West Salem on September 10 that things went haywire for the five-foot-ten-inch opposite hitter/middle blocker.

“My home game against West (Salem) and I just moved weird, that felt weird.  I went to practice, jumped and came down after that I was done,” Ainam described.

The injury sidelined her for the remainder of her sophomore season, and with Covid canceling Spring sports and pushing Volleyball to the Spring this past year, it gave Ainam the time needed to properly heal up. 

It was difficult for sure just sitting on the bench, going through the repetitiveness of rehab and cheering on her teammates from afar.  But being in high-spirits helped her through the tough time that was the healing process.

Ainam (14) sending the ball over the net in McKay’s game with McDaniel to open the Silver Bracket Saturday afternoon (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

Ainam returned for McKay this past Spring, slowly getting back into playing shape as the Scots played in the tough Mountain Valley Conference/Mid-Willamette Conference crossover schedule where they went 2-11. 

Through it all though, it helped her to teach her to be a leader.  Saturday had McKay host their annual McKay Tournament, this time at the Capital Fieldhouse, formerly known as The Hoop.  Cheering on her teammates on the court and directing her teammates against McDaniel in the first round of the Silver Bracket and against North Salem in the bracket semi-final.

Rosa Flores, Hannah Treml put their bodies on the line going after offline balls against the Vikings, fighting in the 27-29, 21-25 defeat as the squad turned their focus to Sprague on Tuesday evening.

“It’s amazing and it feels good, I just want to help everybody to be their best.  These girls are really key’d in and they’re all going to be great leaders.” Ainam said of being a leader.  “This team is young, but these girls are trying their best and I really appreciate that from everybody.  I think it’s a great quality for our team and we’re ready to go back out this week and kill it.”

First serve against the Olympians will be at 7pm at Sprague High School.

Photos By Jeremy McDonald

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