SDSU volleyball squad prepares for European tour

BROOKINGS – South Dakota State’s volleyball team will get an early start in preparing for its 53rd season, as the Jackrabbits will embark on an 11-day, three-match trip to Italy on May 6-16.

The trip, the program’s first international tour, has the Jackrabbits flying to Rome and making stops in Vatican City, Tuscany, Florence, Cinque Terre, San Marino, Venice, Milan and Lake Como. SDSU will play local teams May 9, 11 and 15.

“This trip will be vital in our progress as a program. It will allow our players to be pushed out of their comfort zone and fully rely on each other to solve problems in such a different way,” fourth-year SDSU coach Nicole Cirillo said. “Experiencing new cultures and exploring places that some of these girls may never have another opportunity to do is something very special to provide for these young women. What better way to teach our student-athletes about diversity, the world and other cultures than actually experiencing it first-hand. Not only does this trip allow us to experience the beautiful country of Italy, but learning a different style of volleyball, making new friends and of course experiencing it with each other will be invaluable for our players and program.”

The Jackrabbits will hold a fundraiser Monday at Cubby’s Sports Bar and Grill in Brookings. For every food item purchased from the menu that day, Cubby’s will donate a $1 for the team’s trip to Italy.

The entire trip is organized by American International Sports Teams, the same company Cirillo worked with on her trip to Italy with a select team in 2016.

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