Jan. 15, 2013
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SPRINGFIELD -- For the third time in the Melissa Stokes era, the Missouri State volleyball team will take an international trip when the Bears embark on a 10-day tour of Nicaragua, May 17-26.
While in Nicaragua, the Bears will have the opportunity to play several exhibition matches, participate in community service projects such as visiting local schools and orphanages, as well as tourist activities including surfing lessons and a zip-line canopy tour.
“We have had the opportunity in the past to travel to Europe and play on two different occasions,” Stokes said. “Although those trips were incredible, I wanted our players to experience a trip that involved an outreach and service component. Nicaragua provides us the chance to meet our goal of being involved in service activities as well as providing our team with the best opportunity to train and compete in preparation for the 2013 season.”
In the coming weeks and months leading up to the trip, the Bears will be participating in a number of fundraising opportunities to help cover their expenses, beginning with a bowl-a-thon on Jan. 26 at Battlefield Lanes in Springfield. Follow this link for more information on the bowling event, or call the MSU Volleyball office at 417-836-4136 to learn more about the ways the team will fund raise throughout the spring or to make a donation.
“I believe when a team works to fund their own trip, it becomes a more valuable experience for them,” Stokes added. “Through our activities, we will not only grow and stretch ourselves as individuals, but we will be able to grow as a team through the preparation for this trip.”
NCAA rules permit Division I schools to participate in one out-of-season trip abroad every four years. Rules also allow players to experience a foreign tour just once during their intercollegiate careers.
Stokes, who begins her 18th season at MSU in August, is 373-179 overall with NCAA Tournament appearances following seven of the last 10 seasons. The Bears return 16 of the 17 players from last season’s team.