Girls volleyball serves up an undefeated tournament

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Girls volleyball serves up an undefeated tournament




The New Trier gilrs volleyball meets at the beach before the season starts for team bonding

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This past weekend, New Trier played in the Summer’s End Volleyball Tournament. Not only did they win the tournament, but they beat Loyola 25-5 and 25-15 in the championship game.

New Trier went 5-0 in tournament play while never giving up more than 19 points. In the opening round, the Trevians beat Oak Park River Forest, Wheeling and Highland Park. Then came the semi-final round where New Trier beat Niles West 25-8 and 25-13.

Standouts from the final game were senior Taylor Tashima, who had seven aces, 19 assists and five kills and senior Emily Blackwell who finished the game with eight kills.

Having just come off an undefeated season and placing second in state, the Trevians have already moved on from last season.

“Last year was amazing, but I think this year we are not as much focused on winning every game and being undefeated. We are more focused on the end goal which is to hopefully go down to state,” said Blackwell.

The overall goal isn’t for this team to top last year’s performance. After all, last season will go down in the record books as one of the best seasons for a high school volleyball team. The goal this year is to win as much as possible while putting the Trevians in the best position to go back to state.

“I think there’s pressure on any New Trier sports team to be the best. In volleyball, we don’t really play for bragging rights or for any titles. We all love playing volleyball so much and we’re so dedicated to the sport; we want to bring ourselves to do amazing things,” said senior Haley Fauntleroy.

Going into every game is the same for the Trevians. They don’t think they are the superior team; they don’t think they are in better condition based on a record.

“Before every game we make sure that we don’t underestimate our opponents. We strategize and prepare ourselves for every game the same way no matter how good or how bad the team is,” said Fauntleroy.

Senior Liz Morris agrees with Fauntleroy. “It’ll be a challenge this year, but I think all the competition we have will get our team focused in practice and make us work that much harder during games.”

The majority of the players from this year’s team have been playing together for the past few seasons so they know each other really well.

“I love how familiar we are with each other. We can joke around a little in between points and that lightens up the mood on the court. I always find myself winking at other players,” said Blackwell.

Senior Emmy Friedler agrees with Blackwell.

“This year we have a ton of returners and all of the new players on varsity fit in really well. We were accomplishing things in practice at the beginning of this season that we had trouble with by the end of last season, which is a testament to how reliable and positive our chemistry is.”

Even if a team is as skilled as New Trier, there are always things to work on. “We can always improve things like speed on the court and being a smarter player. You can never be too fast so that’s always a skill worth putting time into,” said Fauntleroy.

This year there will be distractions off the court, as well as on. Scouts will be in the stands at a lot of games and teams will be out for blood against New Trier.

“Our team does a really good job of keeping our focus on the match. We rely on each other to stay focused and calm no matter who is in the stands. Again, that goes back to how important our chemistry is to our success” said Friedler.

With the season just beginning and a lot of pressure on this year’s team, there is a consensus when it comes to the success.

“We’re taking this year one step at a time. We play one game at a time. From there, we can build to the bigger picture of competing outside of conference play,” said Fauntleroy.

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