Volleyball team sets their way to victory

After years of being underdogs to Westlake, NPHS has taken their first step towards dethroning the Warriors by claiming a victory of 25 – 22 on Sept. 9. After their slow and short season last year before COVID-19 hit, the volleyball team resorted to zoom calls.

Despite the first tournament of the season being canceled due to a player having COVID-19, the season is going back to normal. Brooke Burritt, sophomore, has never gotten a real highschool volleyball experience until this year. “[We couldn’t] travel anywhere, we couldn’t have tournaments, we [couldn’t] have games. So a lot of it was not like volleyball, it was a lot more conditioning…It’s a big change,” Burritt said.

Ella Holtzburger, junior, is captain of the JV team, and did not get to have a season last year. Even though Holtzburger had two seasons before COVID-19 because she did club, it didn’t give the same energy as games with NP. “I’m just excited to have home games. I love home games, because I just love the energy and I love the people that come to watch,” Holtzburger said.

Creating a program called “Big Sister” out of needing to cope with being separated & still having team bonding, they were finally able to come together again and support one another in not only the upcoming season but in the school year as well. Kalyna Lewis, senior and member of the varsity team, when having to stop playing indoor volleyball, transitioned smoothly into beach volleyball. “All the players in your group of sisters will tell the other ones things that they like. We all get to text and talk about our days, and we’ll meet on Fridays and talk. As a senior, I get to help my sisters. [On the first day of school], I showed them around campus which [was] super fun,” Lewis said.

NPHS broke Westlake’s five year undefeated streak on NPHS home turf on Sept. 9. “It felt so good, Newbury’s varsity team hadn’t beat Westlake’s in five years so this was huge. There were a ton of nerves going into the game because it was such a big deal so when we finally won, it was such a relief because our hard work had paid off. I was so excited, our whole team was, it was an amazing feeling,” Lewus said.

After bringing home the first win in a while, “Other teams realize that Newbury has a strong team this year and that we’re willing to fight for every win no matter the challenge. Beating Westlake was a huge confidence boost for us and really proved that we could do whatever we put our minds to.

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