Scots tame Cougars in resounding victory

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Lucy Lopshire

Freshman Alyssa Ison serves a ball during the third set against Half Moon Bay.

In a statement win, the Scots dominated the Half Moon Bay Cougars three sets to none in their varsity volleyball match on Sept. 20, turning the tide on their slow start to the season.

After starting the season 0-2 in conference matchups and getting their first victory of the season against Sequoia on Sept. 15, the Scots needed another win to keep their playoff hopes alive and get momentum going for the rest of the season. With the help of great energy off the bench, growing chemistry between players and coaches, and a standout performance from junior opposite/right side Evelyn Welton, they were able to do just that, posting scores of 25-22, 25-15, and 25-13 in the three-set sweep.

“When I started this season my confidence was kind of down, and after being able to do what I did this game, I definitely feel more confident when the ball comes to me, and I feel like the coaches have a huge role in that confidence,” Welton said. 

Welton’s newfound confidence is well-earned after posting a stat line of 14 kills across the three sets, as well as assisting in multiple blocks on defense, a large reason why the Cougars struggled to put points on the board in the latter two sets.

Her blocks also assisted in establishing a strong defensive presence at the net, something that varsity assistant coach and JV head coach Sergio Smirnoff has emphasized for the Scots throughout the season.

“We’ve been working a lot on blocking the last few weeks because we have such a tall and strong team and all that work came together in the game today,” Smirnoff said. 

Besides the outstanding defense, the team chemistry was also clicking on all cylinders, which varsity captain and outside hitter Chianti Raddavero described as a major factor in determining how well the team plays.

“Everyone, whether they’re on the court or off of it, has a huge role in the game. When the energy on the sideline is good, that helps with the pressure, and the sideline also plays a huge role when they call outs, which a lot of spectators don’t realize,” Raddavero said. 

In addition to the shining chemistry between players, the coordination between players and coaches was also excellent, impressive considering this is the coaching staff’s first year at Carlmont. 

“I really think [the coaches] have improved the program a lot. It’s so much more welcoming and fun than it was before. Their coaching style really compliments everyone on the team and has allowed everyone to be comfortable and grow,” Welton said.

Looking forward, the Scots have high hopes for the remainder of the season and have found that no goals are out of the picture.

“There is so much talent and chemistry on this team, and we are always aiming for a new trophy in the case or a new banner on the wall. Today was a spark, and if we keep going in the way that we are going, those great things will happen,” Smirnoff said.