JV boys' volleyball prepares players for varsity

The Newtonite

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Friday at practice, freshman Yaron Yavin practices for the upcoming game against Natick tomorrow.

by Kristian Lundberg

JV boys’ volleyball coach Jason Souza stopped mid-sentence to dispense some final tidbits of wisdom to his team after practice Friday.
“Get some rest and drink lots of milk,” he called out. “If you’re allergic to milk, drink soy milk. If you’re allergic to soy milk, uh, drink rice milk. And if you’re allergic to rice milk, then…”
He trailed off, apparently unable to come up with a suitable rice milk substitute, before returning his attention to the question at hand.
“Now, where were we?”
Where the Tigers were happens to be a pretty good place. JV enters into Wednesday’s home tilt against Natick sporting a 7-4 record, indicative of a predictably successful season for a perennially successful program.
For JV in particular, the Tigers’ winning record is indicative of a nucleus of young talent, crucial for sustaining a strong varsity program. According to Souza, what JV lacks in experience it makes up for in athleticism.

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Junior Chris Donelan bumps the volleyball to a teammate at practice Friday.

“We’re taller and stronger than most of the teams we’ve played. We have a lot of physical strength, so we’re trying to get strong mentally,” Souza said. “We have lots of energy, but as a team we had a lot to learn about strategy, rotations and mental preparedness.”
Souza added that the squad was focused on improving both individually and as a unit.
“We train our JV to take chances so they can become dominant varsity players. Other programs might care most about wins, but we’re okay with losing a few games and becoming a stronger team,” he said.
Junior Robert Anderson, the team’s libero, added that the Tigers were improving over the course of the season.
“Our young players are working hard during practice and getting better,” he said.
The Tigers hope to avenge a two-set loss earlier in the season when they host Natick tomorrow afternoon.