The Union St. Journal: Cherry Creek High School's official news source

Union St. Journal

The Union St. Journal: Cherry Creek High School's official news source

Union St. Journal

The Union St. Journal: Cherry Creek High School's official news source

Union St. Journal

Boys’ Volleyball Struggles to Rebuild

The+boys%E2%80%99+volleyball+team+celebrates+after+a+point+during+a+game+against+Grandview+on+April+9.+Creek+lost+3-0.
Quinn Rudnick
The boys’ volleyball team celebrates after a point during a game against Grandview on April 9. Creek lost 3-0.

After two great seasons in 2021 and 2022, the boys’ volleyball team has struggled to regain form during a rebuilding effort.

Starting the season 3-12 in their first 15 games, head coach Cara Quayle has been trying throughout the season to guide the team back to winning ways.

“Majority of [teams] we played were top 10 or top 15,” Quayle said. “Our record in the beginning was frustrating to me and to the team because we were doing some really good things and we had some really close matches.”

Something clearly wasn’t clicking between the players with loss after loss coming in disappointing ways.

“It’s been tough to try and get the team to form a bond or chemistry, but it’s just a work in progress,” Quayle said.

With new players coming in every year, the bond Quayle is trying to improve becomes hard. This is worsened by the relative nicheness of boys volleyball, with it becoming a CHSAA-sanctioned sport in 2019.

“One of the big things that I want to do is focus on getting the underclassmen varsity level experience, and just learn what the program is about so that they can have the tools that they need to be successful in transitioning up to the varsity level,” Quayle said.

Quayle isn’t the only one who sees the team in this way. Players also understand the need for varsity experience.

“The experience on varsity definitely helped. I’m a lot more confident on the court now,” senior setter Andrew Chung said. “I’m able to make mistakes and then correct them myself.”

While in a rebuilding phase, their record can still be demoralizing. Instead of focusing on that, players have tried to look beyond and focus and what can be changed for the future.

“I think we can just keep improving,” sophomore outside hitter Noah Reynolds said. “We need to stay more disciplined and we need to remember the fundamentals.”

Having this mentality of constant improvement has been necessary for the team to make progress, after an underwhelming and below par start to the season.

“I feel like the way that we’ve played and the momentum that we had, their overall aggression… and building each other up as a team as a play rather than playing as six individuals, I feel like that’s what we’ve been missing,” Quayle said.

With progress in mind and an idea in place to improve for the future, Quayle is relying on returning players next season to guide new players and to create the bond and chemistry the team needs.

“Six people have gotten a good amount of playing time on varsity, so they not only are on the team, but they have the experience of competing at the varsity level,” Quayle said. “I think that those six people that are returning will have a better idea what worked this year and how they can help to start us off strong next year.”

In order to start the season with the bond Quayle wants, it’s important for players with experience to help new ones.

“It’s really important to guide younger players who are still learning the halls of Creek and understanding how Creek volleyball works because it’s a very different setting from club,” Reynolds said.

While their record shows the contrary, Quayle feels hopeful for the future of the team and believes the team is already placed on the right track for the future.

“I feel like the trend that we’re on is like, really exciting for me and hopefully for them too” Quayle said. “We just keep growing and growing, I want that to continue and I want us to become just stronger as a team.”

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About the Contributors
Andrei Machado
Andrei Machado, Assistant Sports Editor
 I’m Andrei, I am a freshman, and this is my first year at the USJ. I also play soccer for the school, and I’m mostly doing journalism because my brother did it.
Quinn Rudnick
Quinn Rudnick, Junior Editor-in-Chief & Sports Editor
Hello, my name is Quinn Rudnick, and I am a junior at CCHS - and this is my third year on staff at the USJ. This year, I am the Junior Editor-in-Chief and Sports Editor. I hold a strong passion for both journalism and photojournalism, and intend to pursue a career in political journalism. As a journalist, I strive to present information to the student body and beyond in a factual and digestible fashion. I write a lot about local and global politics, as well as local theatre and events around the school. You can find me at a lot of Creek sports games, fueling my passion for sports photography and reporting. Outside of the USJ, I follow Formula One racing, the Nuggets and the Avs, and I love snowboarding.

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