Oct. 13, 2005
ACC ALL ACCESS - Monday, 10/17 at 6:30 p.m., on FSN South - delivers unprecedented admission to the Atlantic Coast Conference, capturing the behind-the-scenes, real-life experiences of ACC student-athletes and coaches. The live, weekly series, hosted by Mike Hogewood, goes inside the huddles, on the sidelines, and up-close and personal in practice and in the classroom, to deliver uncanny glimpses into ACC sports.
Reporter Jenn Hildreth visits with Virginia Tech volleyball player Kendra Sytsma, whose circuitous path has led her from her childhood home in Madison, Wis., to two years at Troy (Ala.) University, and finally, in the 2005 offseason, to Blacksburg. Hailing from a family which includes six siblings, Kendra has seen her parents - Ken and Jackie - extend the family's loving arms to outsiders, to rear them as foster children. And, her parent's care for their non-biological children hasn't differed from that exhibited for their own flesh and blood. Their commitment to maintaining a nurturing environment has played a large role in Kendra's decision to major in human development at Virginia Tech, and the junior outside hitter uses her parents' model as her guide. By the way, she's got a little volleyball talent, too. Before getting substantial playing time for the Hokies, Sytsma led Troy with 215 kills last year.
One of the main focuses for Virginia Tech football coach Frank Beamer is the play of his third-ranked Hokies' special teams, which can win or lose a game. One of "Beamer Ball's" special players is left-footed punter Nic Schmitt, who last spring was named the team's most improved specialist and earned Super Iron Hokie honors in the weight room. In this, the 11th straight year the Hokies have had a lefty punter, Schmitt has been called upon 24 times, and his 43.3 yard average is second-best in the ACC. Another weapon in Beamer's crackerjack special team 11 is linebacker Blake Warren, who specializes as the unit's wedge breaker on kick coverage. Warren, who is legally blind, wears a specially-crafted contact lens that delivers eagle-eye vision for hunting down enemy return men. Football has always been a big part of his life as younger brother Brett is also a Tech linebacker, and father Don enjoyed a 14-year NFL career (1979-92) as a tight end with the Washington Redskins.
Finally ACC ALL ACCESS goes behind the scenes with women's soccer player Ashley Stinson, the Hokies' 2004 team MVP. Stinson set four single-season school records on the year - points (39), shots (75), goals (17) and consecutive games registering a point. She was also named the ACC Freshman of the Year as well as All-Mid-Atlantic Region. Following the season, however, Stinson learned that she had a torn ACL in her knee. ALL ACCESS follows her to her through her rehab work, to find out how this sophomore's regimen has already put her back on the field in '05.