Boys’ volleyball falls in CIF opener

By David Gobel

After recovering from a slump during the middle of its season to make the CIF playoffs, the boys’ volleyball team fell to fourth-ranked Newport Harbor in the first round of CIF. The Wolverines finished their season with an overall record of 10-17 and a league record of 5-7.

“We had a passing average that just wasn’t good enough to give us the opportunity to win games, and so we addressed that, and focused on it because we needed to get past that,” Head Coach Adam Black said. “But we did [overcome], and that gave us the chance to win games. However, the season wasn’t long enough for us to take care of everything else [the team needed to work on].”

After losing four games in a row, the Wolverines were tied with league foe St. Francis, who had defeated them earlier in the season. The Wolverines broke their losing streak with a 3-1 win against Notre Dame, then suffered a narrow loss to Crespi. Finally, the Wolverines punched their ticket to the CIF playoffs by defeating Alemany 3-0 on Senior Night.

In the first round of the playoffs, the Wolverines lost to Newport Harbor, a very talented squad that had a 24-9 regular season record and were undefeated in league.

“We passed well, we didn’t make a lot of hitting or serving errors, so I think that we did what we needed to do,” Black said. “But at the end of the day, Newport Harbor has guys that play volleyball a lot, and in the match they simply played a little better than us.”

This year, the team will lose four of its six starters to graduation: Spencer Eichler ’11, Damiene Cain ’11, David Burton ’11 and Matthew Goldhaber ’11. Even with the loss of four players, Black is not too concerned.

“What we have to do is just go to what we have, which I think is some good guys, and just train them up,” Black said. “Hopefully we can get them playing a lot of volleyball before the season starts, and then go to battle with them when the time comes.”