The KSU handball team has learned through competition that handball is not all about winning, but instead about improving. The team finished eighth at nationals recently, only winning two games this season due to a slow start.
Martin Branick and Trevor Sands started the club and began teaching recruits the basics of the game. They are powerful starters, hoping to turn the tables around for the handball team in the future.
“The first two or three months was difficult and challenging because we had to teach people basics like how to pass. Later as people became more experienced we were able to run plays,” Branick said.
The team improved offensively as well as defensively throughout the season, which will help the team drastically next year.
“Offensively one of the things that changed was we started running plays. We didn’t have any plays when we started.
We were able to communicate with the team and that’s when we were able to put up point after point. Defensively we were able to get more physical in the game. Once everyone built confidence, our defense improved and was much better over the past month,” Sands said.
The team may not have done well in the season, but they developed character. Sands and Branick said that going to tournaments was where the team developed relationships and became a family.
“The best thing about this team is we are more of a family than a team. The entire sport of Handball is like a big family. We hang out with other teams despite the game on the court. When you walk off the court you are friends,” Sands said.
The team is currently recruiting players for next year from many different sports, including a six-foot player that previously played basketball.
The handball team plans on becoming more competitive, adding depth and carrying over their improvement to next season despite a minor setback.
“We are losing our best player. He is Danish as well. We lose him and a couple of our starting wing players, but I think the rest of the team is going to improve. We are working on more depth. So I feel like we are going to be a stronger team and it will be a better year,” Branick said.
The team has met their goal this year of improving. Two people started with the team and it has grown into a team of 11. The team has not only seen growth within themselves, they have also grown throughout the handball community, developing relationships that they will have for the rest of their lives.