Girls’ volleyball, a team with tenacity

HEAD’S UP: Senior right side Colleen Engstler goes up for a spike to earn the point.


Ava LaBianco, News Editor

After a 5-0 start, the girls’ volleyball team was stoked for what was to come this season. This is one of the youngest varsity teams DGN volleyball has had with 1 freshman, 3 sophomores, 6 juniors and 5 seniors. Although they had an overall record of 14-22, the girls worked hard and competed in high intensity games.  

“We played one of the top schedules in terms of strength and difficulty in state. Last I checked we are in the 7th hardest schedules in the state according to Max Reps. Our record does not show how competitive we are and good we are compared to other schools,” varsity coach Mark Wasik said. 

Wasik puts the girls up against tough competition to make them become a better and more skilled team. Being put against the top teams has led the girls to fight hard even if they didn’t win. They went into every game with a positive mindset.

“We are very unpredictable. One game we would play like rock stars and the next it was like we had never stepped on the court before. I think we all learned and grew from this,” varsity middle hitter, senior Emma Barton said. 

Each girl on the team has a special talent that they bring to the court. They all have committed several years of their lives to volleyball. Freshman outside hitter Kelley Crowley and sophomore Jenny Buehler were invited to play in the Great Lakes Volleyball Le\ague. Crowley’s team took home gold in the USAV All- Star Championship in the girls select bracket of the nation division.  

“Being able to practice with such great girls and coaches opened up my future in playing volleyball in college. The practices taught me so much that I am now able to apply when I play here at North,” Buelher said. 

The girls took many highly ranked teams to a third set and beat several skilled teams from other states. Wasik believes the girls were always close to coming out and beating great teams. They went 17-25 against Benet, the third highest ranked team in state and 21-25 to the number one in state, Mother McAuley. But the team wants to put their past record aside to get ready for the regional championship. 

“The girls’ goal for regionals is to win a regional championship and  believe we can do it as long as we stay strong. We have to beat Bartlett Highschool in our first round of playoffs and then we have to beat the number one seated team, Willowbrook Highschool,” Wasik said. 

The girls won against Bartlett, but lost to Willowbrook. The game had a score of 25-20 in the first match and 25-16 in the second match. Although this defeat was heartbreaking to the team, the girls are excited to see what next year will bring. 

The team was very close. They did team dinners once a week and did team bonding activities. Many of the girls believe each girl is able to push the girl next to them to get better, which overall betters them to win games. 

Our team was able to click right away. Building a relationship with younger players brought us together, making us a stronger program and a stronger Varsity team. This sets an example for the future DGN volleyball players and brings hope for our program in the future,” junior Lilliiana Utterback said.