Volleyball: The Underrated Sport

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Volleyball: The Underrated Sport

Kimberly Wong

Kimberly Wong

Kimberly Wong

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While most people go to basketball games, football games, and baseball games, few ever choose to attend a SHC Men’s Volleyball game- the underrated sport. Men’s volleyball is often thought of as a boring, easy sport, one requiring little to no athletic ability. On the contrary, men’s volleyball is one of the school’s most exciting sports, with its long rallies and hard hits. Despite being home to some of the school’s best athletes, the underrated sport is often overshadowed by the more popular sports of basketball, football, and baseball.

The SHC Men’s Volleyball program has been one of the most successful sports programs at SHC in recent years. Head Coach Nga Tran led the Fighting Irish to the program’s first ever CCS title on May 15, 2012, sweeping the top-seeded Mt. Madonna School three games to one. In the 2013 season, the Irish finished with a 20-19 record, making it both to the WCAL semifinals and the CCS quarterfinals. This season, the Irish finished with a 21-16 record, again reaching the WCAL semifinals and the CCS first round.

Despite all of this success, the men’s volleyball games never seem to garner a packed gym. Contrary to popular belief, the games are quite exciting to watch. From the vicious topspin serves, tremendous dives, amazing speed, and outrageous leaps, the game will have you on the edge of your seat right until the referee signals the end of the game. The game also features some of the school’s best athletes, such as Liam O’Reilly, who uses both his height and jumping ability from basketball to create an enormous block and send down ridiculously hard hits. In interviewing Varsity volleyball player, Hugh Mac Neill, about the his thoughts on fan attendance, he said “I think it’d be nice to have more fans at our games. The fans’ energy boosts our energy, affecting our overall play.” He then referenced the Bruce Mahoney games, saying “You see at every other Bruce Mahoney game, the bleachers, stadium, and seats are jammed pack with fans. Yet when we played SI, there was barely one area of bleachers filled.”

All sports games are a combination of both the fans and players themselves. The two are complementary, as more fans-more spirit and more energy- can have a huge effect on both the players’ performance and overall outcome of the game. This powerful pair works together in creating successful sports programs, yet the SHC Men’s Volleyball program is missing one facet of this pair: the fans. It is a highly successful program already, but with fan support, it can go much further. Common misperceptions of volleyball being boring and easy need to be forgotten and replaced by a new, deeper understanding that volleyball is an exhilarating sport, with its freak athletes and hard hit balls. So if you are looking for a new sport to watch or even play, remember that volleyball is a sport that will constantly keep you on the edge of your seat.

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