By Coach Gino Johnson
This year, the Vermont Principals Association made it official that volleyball would be an “exhibition sport” for the first time in Vermont. This means volleyball has a chance to become a varsity sport within two to three years. After growing up in California and playing volleyball in college, it was exciting to help CVU build a volley program.
After the boys squad lost its first official match of the year, the team quickly realized what it would take to compete at the high school level. Each week, the boys got stronger and grew closer as a team. In the end, the team won eight straight matches, closing out the regular season with an 8-1 record.
Heading into the state tournament, the Redhawks were seeded second. With strong teamwork and the ability to win some really close matches against Burlington and Lyndon, the CVU boys teamwent 12-0 in round robin pool play.
In the semifinal match, CVU won two games versus Burlington to advance to the state championships against Essex. The Hornets came out strong and won the first game. The Redhawks battled back to win the second game and forced a tiebreaker game to 15. In the end, the Hornets beat the Redhawks 15-13 to win the state championship.
Head coach Johnson commented, “In a matter of two months, many of these guys who had never played volleyball before became solid players and runner-up state champions. As their coach, I could not be more proud.”