Boys volleyball finishing what they started

Senior middle blocker Cam Neiman at preseason practice on Friday Feb. 26 preparing for tryouts starting on Mar. 1st.

Meghan McGowan

Senior middle blocker Cam Neiman at preseason practice on Friday Feb. 26 preparing for tryouts starting on Mar. 1st.

Boys volleyball had an abrupt stop to their season last year when COVID shut everything down, but the team has been working since then to create just as strong of a team this year, and accomplishing what they wanted to do last year. 

Last year boys volleyball was on a winning streak with only losing one game in a tournament. The team recovered from the loss quickly, and then won their next two games in the tournament but after that the season was over due to COVID. “…We were one of the best one or two teams in the entire state. We were hoping for a state championship…” head coach Ryan Tolman said about what he thinks the team could have accomplished last year. 

This upcoming season should have a lot of new players on the court with 10 seniors graduating last year, but the younger players are bringing new talent to the team. Senior Middle blocker Cam Neiman stated, “…I think the majority of our talent comes from the younger kids” when talking about how the loss of so many players affects the team for the upcoming season. 

Having 10 seniors graduate affects the team in many different ways but the biggest way is who is going to lead the team and set the example for all the new players. “The biggest way it affects us is in leadership, the next group of kids that are going to really lead the team and do things the way we want them to be done,” Tolman said. Senior Outside hitter Dalan Smith talks about how it is now the new seniors responsibility to be the new leaders of the team, “The main goal of the seniors is to show the freshmen, sophomores, and the younger kids what to do.” 

Pre-season has started for the team with open gyms on Tuesdays and Fridays, with the team focusing on building teamwork, “I think that we have been able to build up a lot of chemistry in the past couple of weeks” junior outside hitter Jack Stanely said. The team is also working on different skills to be really prepared for the season. “I think we are just still learning, and still practicing really hard and building chemistry right now but I think we are going to do really good this season,” Smith commented about how the upcoming season will go based on their preseason training. 

COVID is still a big issue going into this next season but the team is not worried about their season getting canceled again. Neiman remarked “…I think that because we lost our season last year we will get our season this year” about going into the season. Tolman is not worried going into the season, but does think it will be different from other seasons with the new protocols, “… obviously trying to adjust protocols should be interesting, but I think our boys are resilient and tough so we should be fine” Tolman said. 

The team is ready to take on the season starting Mar. 1st, and they want to finish what they started last year by trying to win the state championship. “I would say we have a pretty good shot at winning,” Stanley stated.