The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

Boys’ volleyball falls in CIF quarterfinals


The boys’ volleyball team achieved its highest win percentage of 75% this season in the last 15 years and its first season with more than 20 overall wins since 2017. The team progressed to the California Interscholastic FederationSouthern Section (CIF-SS) Division 4 quarterfinals – the furthest placementin the team’s history – against Murrieta Mesa High School on May 1.

Boys’ Volleyball Program Head Garrett Yamasaki said the team’s success this year can be attributed to each player’s dedication to improvement and the strong bond within the team.

“The boys are the ones putting in the time to improve on their skills and making sure that they’re working out in the weight room,” Yamasaki said. “Most importantly, [our success] is about us being a family first. By seeing ourselves as a family, we were able to go through the ups and downs of what a season can present to us.”

Yamasaki said team captains Victor Lowe ’24 and Wilson Federman ’24 have shown exemplary leadership throughout the season.

“The leadership of [Federman] and [Lowe] is second to none,” Yamasaki said. “They lead through example [by] being the hardest working guys in the gym. Whether that is learning a skill set or running a set of lines, those guys are putting in the time and showing others how it should be done. Along with that, their competitive spirit is fantastic. They set the tone not to accept less than giving our best.”

Lowe, who is committed to playing Division 1 volleyball at the University of Hawai’i, said the team gained more motivation once the players started bonding with each other.

“Not only did I grow as a leader this year, [but] I had an awesome time spending time with [the team] and getting to know the team on a more personal level,” Lowe said. “Over the course of the year, we got more focused, and our mindset was focused on winning more as we were realizing how great we could be. I think pushing that mindset was an important part of my leadership. We changed the culture in the program to be much more competitive and focused than the years past, which I hope will carry on for years to come.”

Before the team advanced to the CIF quarterfinals, outside hitter Harrison Walline ’25 injured his knee, leaving him out for the season. Middle blocker Daniel Farinzpour ’25 said the team’s tight-knit connections allowed them to recover relatively smoothly following Walline’s injury.

“The team is really just a family,” Farzinpour said. “We all work together really well, especially with the new younger guys coming. The only downside of it was that Harry broke his knee, which kind of shifted everything. It was really good that Callum MacLachlan [’26] and Matthew Commons [’26] could really step up, switch their positions and fill in those roles.”

Yamasaki said the team’s goals this year will set a baseline for next season to ensure consistent improvement.

“This season, we wanted to break through that barrier of making playoffs,” Yamasaki said. “Moving forward, our standard will be to make playoffs and then be relevant in playoffs. We are going to be setting our sights on going after that CIF ring. We’ll have some growing to do from this year to next year, but we’ll be making playoffs for sure.”

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Nathan Wang, Assistant News Editor

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