Comets Volleyball to rely on experience in ‘19

Indranshu Das | Staff Writer

Head coach Paul Melnick talks about his vision for this upcoming season.
Senior outside hitter Evan Beyke talks about this season’s lineup.

Experience matters.

With critical returning players and a good year under their belt, the Mason Boys Volleyball team looks to reach the summit and bring home a Greater Miami Conference championship this year.

Seniors outside hitter Evan Beyke and defensive specialist Ryan Doerrer look to make their last year count and achieve what this program has been striving for the past 11 years: a conference title.

Beyke believes this team can achieve history in 2019.

“I feel like we have a good lineup set and we have a really good chance of winning GMCs this year,” Beyke said.“The players are really motivated this sea- son to really get there, to the top.”

(From left to right) Seniors Nikola Bommarito and Evan Beyke return for one last season ready to reach their season goals.

Up and coming programs such as the Mason Boys Volleyball team thrive off leadership from seasoned veterans. Captain Evan Beyke believes the past two years have really helped him motivate the younger players on the team.

“The older guys have definitely pushed me. I feel much more motivated and driven to push this program into new levels,” Beyke said. “I intend to bring the younger guys up to a certain level just as the upperclassmen had worked to bring me up and be able to face this situation as I am now. I wouldn’t have gotten first team all-conference last year without their support.”

“We got a seasoned team returning this year, with a lot of guys having 3 years of experience playing at the varsity level.”

Head coach Paul Melnick

Head coach Paul Melnick believes this team can replicate the run they had back in 2012, when they bounced back from a disappointing 9-15 season in 2011 to an outstanding 20-4 record.

“I think this season without doubt could be right there [with the 2012 season],” Melnick said.

Melnick also reiterated the importance of experience. Melnick said that with a team of players who know what it takes to compete at this level, they have a better chance of accomplishing their goals.

“We got a seasoned team returning this year, with a lot of guys having 3 years of experience playing at the varsity level,” Melnick said.

Last season starred Jacob LaSala, Alex Amaya, and Brayden DeWitt, each of them bringing something special to the squad: leadership, camaraderie, and mental toughness. With them gone, junior Damian Sauer, sophomore Brysen King, and freshman Anthony Fago look to shoulder the expectations of having a memorable season.

Melnick discusses how in team sports such as volleyball, talent is a small factor in how well a school performs season to season. Hard work, dedication, and most importantly communication are all key ingredients to a team’s success. Melnick said his tough preseason practices have pushed his players to new limits by frequently running inter-squad competitions that will pay off later in the year.

“We’ve really ramped up our practices this year – a lot of guys getting challenging opportunities,” Melnick said. “Every day the guys are ready to roll and are looking forward to not just getting the spot but truly earning it through their hard work.”

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Photos by Tanner Pearson.

Videos by Indranshu Das.