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April 6, 2011

Coed volleyball secures first season win

by Sebastian Medina-Tayac, Editor-in-Chief
This story was based on post-game interviews only and not on a first-hand account.

NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM, April 1-

The coed volleyball team won their first game of the season against the Wheaton Knights in four sets on Friday. Following close wins in the first two sets (25-23, 25-21, 25-23, 26-24), the Blazers lost their match point in the third set by celebrating too early and turning their back on the ball. This allowed the Knights to pick up their momentum in the fourth set and win the next three points to win the match. Though the Blazers picked up the last set to win their first game, head coach Chris Klein said the game was too close.

Senior Pape Koite (6'7'')  leaps into the air to deliver a killer spike as part of Blair's unrelenting offense against Wheaton. Sebastian Medina-Tayac
Senior Pape Koite (6'7'') leaps into the air to deliver a killer spike as part of Blair's unrelenting offense against Wheaton.
According to Klein, Wheaton played a very defensive game, in which most of the points they scored were due more to Blair's numerous mistakes than their skill. According to co-captain Libby Wei, the team had lost focus in the third game, and in their jubilation following their first "win" they turned their backs on the point to form a celebratory circle and missed Wheaton's return.

The hit Wheaton managed to save was one of senior Pape Koite's deadly spikes, which hit a player, hit the net, and then was bumped over the net by a player.

According to co-captain Nika Lilley, watching from the bench out on an injury, players were embarrassed and angry, and the coach was "speechless," especially after losing the set. "You never stop playing until the whistle blows," Lilley said.

Despite this, and many smaller mistakes, the team made huge improvements overall, winning their first game, and sets, of the season. The team displayed a greater knowledge of the game, playing in their positions long enough to use the strong attacks that shattered Wheaton's firm defense.

The team's joy over their first win was dampened by the resignation of Rachel Chen, one of the team's strong defense players, according to Lilley. She, allegedly, was frustrated by the amount of time she was spending on the bench. Klein declined to comment on how this would impact the team's future performance.

According to Klein, the team would have to work towards cleaning up the rookie mistakes, such as the one that cost them the third set, to face powerhouse Sherwood on Monday. "We broke the cardinal rule of volleyball: you never turn your back on the point," he said.

The varsity coed volleyball team will play its next home game on Monday, Apr. 4 against Sherwood at 5:15 p.m.



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  • forever alone (View Email) on April 6, 2011 at 7:25 PM
    Mannnn Sebi you shoulda been there.

    *defense players ==> defensive players?
    Also while losing Rachel is indeed regrettable, not sure if belongs in here... oh well.

    But yeah basically you should have been there! :] Nice job on the article.
    • secondary (View Email) on April 6, 2011 at 9:47 PM
      Is the official name "coed" or "co-ed"? I notice you use both in this article. I believe MCPS uses "coed", btw.
  • volleyball guru on April 8, 2011 at 12:23 PM
    pape is 6'7"????? is this turning into basketball where they list players 2-3 inches taller than they actually are?
  • wow on April 10, 2011 at 8:06 PM
    this is just an observation...but why does the peanut gallery always feel the need to attack the volleyball writers? I mean goodness. give it a rest...
    • the gallery is empty (View Email) on April 13, 2011 at 7:26 PM
      Cause you know, sometimes they're wrong? If you want to call it an attack, it's duly deserved on some level.

      Also the "peanut gallery" was a name from a boy's article. Just saying.
    • player on April 13, 2011 at 7:29 PM
      be less wrong and we'll stop
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