Volleyball New England Tournament

The Sacred Heart varsity volleyball team celebrates their success with their coaches at the New England Preparatory School Class B tournament.
Courtesy of Jen Esposito 15'

The Sacred Heart varsity volleyball team celebrates their success with their coaches at the New England Preparatory School Class B tournament. Courtesy of Jen Esposito 15'

The Sacred Heart varsity volleyball team celebrates their success with their coaches at the New England Preparatory School Class B tournament.
Courtesy of Jen Esposito 15′

The Sacred Heart varsity volleyball faced a season full of difficulties and inconveniences. Nevertheless, the team celebrated an impressive 2012 season with their success at the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council Class B tournament.
After being crowned FAA tournament Champions of the 2011 season, the team held high expectations for this fall. With a record of 13-3-0, the team proved its talent and consistency.  In the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council tournament (NEPSAC) the team was seeded fifth and proceeded to topple fourth seeded Dana Hall and first seeded Pomfret School to advance to the final match. They lost to second seeded Governor’s Academy with set scores of 19-25, 25-11, 25-19, and 25-19.
Despite finishing second, the team celebrated an accomplished season. Key factors to their success included experience, drive and determination.
“We have five returning starters and we’ve worked on mental training just as much as physical training; we focus on playing to the best of our ability, not just winning,” Head Coach Kim Lippmann said.
The captains were also crucial to the team’s achievement.
“Leadership on the team played a big role,” said sophomore Claire O’Neill. “Alex and Devon were great captains and they really carried the team this season.”
However, the team also had to overcome challenges.
“We had great momentum going until we suddenly had a week off and no games for over two weeks because of the weather,” Coach Lippmann said.
In addition to the climate, the varsity volleyball team sometimes struggled to keep their mental focus against tough competitors.
“The biggest challenge we faced this year was in maintaining our focus throughout the games,” Claire said. “We tended to get down on ourselves after losing a point.”
Despite the setbacks, the team was able to surmount these challenges.
“We are such a strong team when we play together, communicate, and remember our basics,” sophomore Jen Esposito said.
 
– Grace Isford, Staff Writer