BY MATTHEW MANGAM
The boys’ volleyball team will begin its season at rival East Brunswick on April 1. The team finished last season with a 23-2 record and won the GMC and State Championship for the third season in a row.
The players are very optimistic for the upcoming season and have set big goals. “Our goal is to become a better team by putting in the work every single day,” said senior captain Robert Obdyke. “If we stay determined and work hard, we will reach our goal, which is winning a fourth straight GMC championship, central jersey championship, and state championship.”
The Knights have several returning seniors, including Pavlo Chernyshov, David Flores, Obdyke, Jeremy Smith, and Michael Tribianni. “I hope the returning seniors will lead by example, by being dedicated, positive and putting the team first,” said Head Coach Andrew Hopman.
Junior Blake Krapf led the team last season with 154 kills and said the team wants to win everything. “One thing we do best is work harder than everyone else. Our whole team’s work ethic is amazing, and we do whatever it takes to win. On and off the court. And what we do on our own time really separates us from the rest,” said Krapf.
Chernyshov, who contributed 95 kills last season, said the team will face a lot of strong teams this year, including Southern, Scotch-Plains Fanwood, Rancocas Valley and East Brunswick. “Although the team may look different from last year’s, we still work in the same way that has been successful. Between the upcoming talent and the returning players with experience, chances are looking great for us to go so far. Every team is taking us seriously and we have a target on our backs to defend the title.”
Obdyke, who led the team with 257 digs last season, revealed his personal goals that he plans to achieve. “My goal is to be the best captain and teammate I can possibly be. I will lead this team to the best of my abilities and never let them down. I am also striving to be named First Team All-State. This is an honor that I accomplished last year, and I hope to repeat it again this year.”
The team has worked hard to prepare for the upcoming season by playing club volleyball, practicing together every day, and discussing different ways to improve as a group. Come out to support the team at EBHS at 4pm on April 1 and in their quad meet at home at 9am on April 2.
Posted on 3/23/22
Photos by Lors Photography