BY RACHEL MATHEW
The Bay’s boys volleyball team was undefeated 7-0 until COVID-19 cut their season short. Coach Breno Ertty said his team has now gone one year and seven months without losing a single game. As of late, Ertty said they have maintained their focus on the upcoming season and the precautions they will have to take.
“We will be doing our part in being vigilant about masks and cleaning our gym and equipment,” Ertty said. “We are keeping the least reason to have COVID-19 interrupt our season.”
Senior and Outside Hitter, Gabe Blandin said the team has remained focused on having as normal of a season they can have amid a global pandemic. He said they will be having group practices and regular volleyball practices this upcoming season.
“Our practices are probably going to consist of group workouts and regular volleyball practices,” Blandin said. “And honestly, I feel excited because I really want to play still and I want to go out of high school winning states.”
Senior and Middle Blocker, Sebastian Heer said this year the team is planning on having a full season with COVID-19 safe practices and games. He said they hope to be able to remain undefeated and participate in the States Series this year because they were unable to take part in the championships last year.
“What is expected of us this upcoming season is to stay undefeated and win states because we were previously ranked one of the top 50 teams in the nation and we hope to keep that or move up in our ranking,” Heer said.
Blandin said many of the team’s athletes have found themselves preparing for the upcoming tryouts by getting back into shape through exercise and practicing their skills. He said they are used to working out as a team but due to Covid-19, group workouts were not an option for them.
“Last year, my teammates and I began working out together and I think it made our team a lot more prepared and fit for the season,” Blandin said.
Heer said while they are planning on having a full season, this required them to push the starting of the season back a few months until April. There is not a set date for tryouts yet, but they have discussed holding them in late March or early April.
“I did want the season to start normally and it is a bummer that it was pushed back, but if I have to wait a few more months and take extra precautions to play, I don’t mind,” Heer said.
Ertty said all male students are welcome to tryout and show off their skills. He said he believes they have a very strong returning class and incoming freshmen class.
“The combination of young talent and experience, specifically from the seniors that have been playing all year at their clubs, will be our main weapon to reach the States Series for the second time in Cypress Bay’s history,” Ertty said.
This season will be the senior athletes last time playing volleyball with their high school team. Blandin said they plan to give it their all and fight their way to the States Series.
“I’m very excited for the season since it’s my last year playing for the team,” Blandin said. “My goal as captain is to lead my team to the district championships and even further to the regional and state championships.”