The Start of a New Season

Esteban Varela, Social Media Manager

With the addition of a new coach to the girls volleyball program, the girls fought it out in their first league game of the year against Mayfair on September 13th, in the infamous Downey Highschool Gym. 


This past summer the girls have been diligent at bettering their skills with the help of their new head coach, Patchell, and their strength and conditioning coach, Minor. When asked about the impact of their new head coach, Natalie Contreras, 12, states “He’s a great coach and an amazing addition to our program. He’s definitely brought out a lot of skills held within the girls which has really improved our team chemistry with him. He is constantly hyping us up and making great calls.” 


The Lady Vikes started off strong winning their first set with a huge deficit, 25-11. The starting lineup consisted of four seniors, who have all been in the program their whole high school career. Since this season will be their fourth year in the program, the seniors believe they have a lot to bring to the court. 


Here’s what Aryanna Martinez, 12, had to say about what she had to offer as a senior, “As seniors what we bring to the team is experience by being able to stay locked into the game and keep our differences outside of the court. Most of us seniors have been playing for four years with each other, so building chemistry is something else we try to do for the younger divisions by giving them an example of how the girls should treat each other with respect and like we’re best friends.” 


The senior Vikes did exactly that, guiding their team to take the second set 25-7. The girls dominated their first league game of the season which left room for the younger divisions on Varsity to showcase their talents in the third and final set. As the set progressed, they did exactly that taking the third and final set 25-22. For all athletes, every game is a learning experience, win or lose. Taking away certain aspects and experiences is important in improving an individual and team work ethic. 


Here’s what varsity captain Rebeca Marquez, 11, took away from her team’s first league game, “I would take away the feeling of my teammates not feeling confident on the court. The whole time I feel that everyone should feel confident while they play and not worry about making mistakes. If we can work on that more our season will be much better and we can focus on bettering each other instead of just focusing on messing up.” 


With a long season ahead of them filled with many learning experiences and memories to be made, these ladies are channeling their inner viking to improve their skill, team chemistry, and fight for a CIF title once again.