At Pace the sports culture is alive and thriving. Sports unite the under and upperclassmen and create a strong school spirit. The same can be said about the schools Girls Varsity Volleyball team. With their first game of the season coming up, September 19, and having just finished an impressive preseason Pace hopes to be better than ever. There’s a lot to be said about the group of girls in this years team, both rookies and veterans, but the main thing you should know is that they’re all ready to play their hearts out this upcoming season. I consider having sat in on their practice a privilege, immediately they disregarded my presence and got to work.
There is a sense of comfort and determination when you walk into the gym during their practice. You look around and see the girls with determined faces and you can tell they’re ready to bring a championship title to Pace. However, it isn’t just the players who look and feel this way. You can see the same look of wonderment on the players and coaches. It’s a sense of direction and it’s clear where this team wants to head. What they hope to achieve, not only for themselves but for the entire school.
When speaking to the coach, Nicholas Lee, he had some insightful comments about the 2019 team. “You can look at the kids eyes and you know that they are going to be a part of something.” To say their coach has high expectations is an understatement, not just as a whole but individually too. Each girl is mentored so that they perfect their strong skill sets and improve their weaknesses. The team has excellent chemistry and they push each other adequately. You sit in the gym and watch them call each other’s mistakes and clap for their great moves. Encouragement is something that oozes out of this team at Pace.
It’s something the developing players definitely feel as they get ready for the season, which comes sooner than last years. Coach Lee has eyes set on Daphne Villatoro and Tayo Dube. Speaking with them they tell of their experience thus far. “The team is intense and challenging”, expectations are high not just for the upcoming players like Villatoro and Dube but for all players. The pressure is on, as the older players are desperate for that title, after last seasons defeat in Round 2 of the playoffs. Villatoro and Dube make it clear that you have to learn to ask for help because if you don’t it doesn’t just hurt you but the team as a whole.
The team is definitely ready to excel this season and the coaches are ready to lead them on that journey. All of Pace has their back as they step up for their first match this Thursday.