Volleyball teams have been trickling onto the courts in preparation for the upcoming season. For the next few days, until the season begins on Friday, Sept. 11, I’ll be posting previews of area teams heading into the season. Also, I’ll leave a sneak peak of the season preview package.
Strong, Smart and Young
Guilford’s season ended in the first round of the Class L tournament, with a 3-1 loss to Naugatuck. This season could be a lot different for the Indians.
They are led by 2014 GameTimeCT/New Haven Register All-Area selection Heather Wirth. The senior middle blocker had 153 kills, 72 blocks and 60 digs. She’s joined by senior outside hitter Meredith Shank, senior libero Samantha Shank, and junior middle blocker/outside hitter Cia Anastasio.
“We are returning all but one starter,” said coach Laura Meyer, who is in her second year. “We come in with more experience than last year, and our girls are athletic and keep volleys going.”
Guilford kept it going midseason in 2014, rebounding from a slow 1-3 start. The Indians pieced together a five-match winning streak, highlighted with a win over Mercy. Meyer is hoping for more of the same, but said the Indians will have to overcome some shortcomings.
“Our girls’ size may not be as big as other teams,” she said, “but (we) are strong and smart.”
More about Guilford: Finished last season 13-10. … Open season on Sept. 11 with Hamden. … Guilford defeated Hamden 3-0 in its only match up with the Green Dragons.
Amity saw 2014 end at the hands at its most bitter or rivals.
The Spartans dropped a 3-2 decision to the Rams in the Class LL semfinals after leading the match 2-1. Coach Seth Davis and the Spartans have put it behind them and are looking to do everything better in 2015.
“Hopefully we’ll continue how we did last year,” he said. “I’m hoping to continue what we worked, not just to improve our record, but to improve how we play.”
And Amity’s record last year wasn’t half bad. The Spartans ended the regular-season at 17-3 and included winning streaks of eight twice and two. All three streaks were halted via losses to Cheshire. The first two were in the regular-season, the final defeat in the Southern Connecticut Conference final.
More about the Spartans: Amity opens the season on Sept. 11 against North Haven. … The Spartans face Cheshire on Sept. 18.
A staple of any GameTimeCT.com/New Haven Register preview is the top player list. The list is almost always scrutinized and this year’s will most likely be no different. Below are a few players that have made the Top 10 Players list. Comment on who else you think should make the team and why.
Top 10 sneak peak
- Heather Wirth, Guilford, Sr., middle blocker: She was the only underclassmen to make the GameTimeCT/New Haven Register All-Area team and was also All-SCC.
- Michaela Cardozo, Amity, Sr., middle hitter: Was named All-SCC and led her team to the Class LL semifinals.