Scots hunt down Wildcats in volleyball match

Scots+player+Natache+Adan+spikes+a+ball+between+two+opposing+defenders.

Davinder Josephson

Scots player Natache’ Adan spikes a ball between two opposing defenders.

Following two disappointing losses last Saturday and the struggle of their head coach stepping down, the Carlmont girls varsity volleyball team entered the week looking for some inspiration.

A 3 to 1 set home victory over Woodside on Thursday evening, Sept. 23, gave the team the spirit and encouragement that they had been missing.

“Having to come together for this [match] was really important for us, and I think this was really good because we were able to bring back energy to the team,” Chianti Raddavero, a junior and varsity volleyball player for Carlmont, said.

The Scots’ two major tournament losses this past weekend included careless mistakes, such as failing to block and poor ball placement. However, analyzing these mistakes also served to prepare the team for the game against their Wildcat rivals.

“I think that from the tournament, we learned a lot on what we need to work on, so if anything, it helped us in this game,” Carlmont coach Michelle Spence said.

After splitting the first two sets with Woodside, Carlmont narrowly won the third, 27-25, before dominating the fourth set to secure the victory. Not only did the matchup hold significance for Carlmont, but their Woodside rivals understood its importance for their season.

“This was our match to determine whether we would stay in the playoffs or be knocked out,” Woodside coach Denny Falls said. “I think we just walked in knowing that if we didn’t win tonight, playoffs are out of the question.”

The Carlmont team regroups to talk after a close first set. (Davinder Josephson)

On the Carlmont side, there were a handful of outstanding performances. Jordan Yee, a senior, had a long successful serving streak to start off the second set, giving Carlmont a 10-point lead.

Sasha Belov, another senior, has been a role model throughout the season for the Scots’ younger players. During the match, Belov won multiple points for the team through powerful spikes at the net.  Her unique ball placement and clever setting decisions impressed the large crowd in Carlmont’s main gym.

“I think [Belov] did a really good job of placing the ball, which is something that we’ve been trying to work with her on, so she really showed that in today’s game,” Spence said.

The Carlmont coaching staff also made notable decisions during the match that helped cement the outcome. By switching to a five-one setup, the team was able to shift the focus on their powerful front row, which proved decisive.

With their win on Thursday, the 9-10 Carlmont team showed how resilient they could be to the adversity that faced them. 

“I’m really proud of them for pushing through all the challenges that they’ve encountered, and I hope that we continue to win more games,” Spence said.