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The Current

The Student News Site of Ocean Lakes High School

The Current

The Student News Site of Ocean Lakes High School

The Current

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Boys volleyball leads, humble and hungry to make history

Seniors Vincent Yi and Daved Holloway work together to block Kempsville hitter Ryan Pecora during the region championship game on Nov. 7, 2023 at Deep Creek High School. Photo used with permission from Mike Caudill.

Boys volleyball soaks up the moment after returning home as 5A region champions.

After defeating Great Bridge in the regional quarter finals, Hickory in the semifinals and Kempsville in the finals, the team aims for the grand prize: 5A state champions.

“This game was a huge team win. It wasn’t a singular person who stood out and carried us, but every member did their job successfully,” said senior and captain Barrett Scharfe. 

According to Barrett, Kempsville had a strong 6 ‘6 hitter who got set nearly every time, earning the majority of Kempsville’s kills, but Ocean Lakes was able to quickly adjust as they triple blocked his hits. 

“Kempsville is a phenomenal team and I knew at any point they could go on an eight or nine point run and take the lead,” said junior and libero Gavin Juhas. “It wasn’t until we scored the last point that I realized we were going to win.”

Both teams knew regionals would be a close match, with the victory coming down to the team most eager to win. 

“During the fourth set after we started going point for point, I realized that we had them on the ropes. I could see the look of tiredness in their faces; however, we still looked poised and ready to fight,” said senior and captain Donny Velazquez. “I was taken aback at the fear we accomplished.”

In the past two years, the team has made it to the regional semifinals, but have failed to advance.

“We were hungry for a win especially against Kempsville almost as a redemption game for our loss on senior night against them,” said Velazquez.

As the boys prepare for states, they take with them confidence in their biggest weapons: their mindset and chemistry.

“Our team is very close to each other. We are able to give criticism, however, we also know how to take it and adjust, we all have an underlying respect for each other that goes a long way,” said Velazquez.

The team is eager now more than ever to be the first boys Ocean Lakes volleyball team to take home a state championship trophy. 

“We have been fighting to prove we are the best team in the Beach and I firmly believe we as a team have been putting in more work than anybody else out there,” said Velazquez. 

The team will compete at the state quarterfinals on Saturday, Nov. 10, at 2 p.m. at Ocean Lakes High School against Douglas Freeman. 

“The team’s goal from the start was to win states. At the start of the year, I think it was more of a dream than a goal. As we grew as a team it became more realistic,” said Gavin.

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About the Contributor
Khadija Sissoko
Khadija Sissoko, Editor-in-Chief
Khadija Sissoko is a second-year journalist and Editor-in-Chief of The Current. As a middle child of six, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her family. She is the SCA Secretary, FBLA President, Latin Honor Society Editor, Founder of the Cultural Appreciation Club and a year-round athlete on the cross country and track team. Outside of school, she enjoys baking, graphic design, volunteering and spending time in nature. In the future, she hopes to become an entrepreneur.

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