After a tough game, Girls Varsity Volleyball team beats Berman

The Lions celebrate an “ace,” or a serve the opposing team was unable to return. The Lions defeated the Cougars, with a score of 3-2.

photo by Ella Kotok

The Lions celebrate an “ace,” or a serve the opposing team was unable to return. The Lions defeated the Cougars, with a score of 3-2.

Ella Kotok, Reporter

The Girls’ Varsity Volleyball team pulled off an impressive 3-2 win against the Berman Hebrew Academy Cougars Thursday. 

The Lions started out strong, bulldozing through the first set. An offensive powerhouse, the team scored point after point, winning 25-11. Sophomores Neely Shemony and Darya Dayanim both executed multiple spectacular kills, creating problems for a flimsy Cougar defense. The set concluded after a continuous streak of successful serves by sophomore setter Reut Skromme.

“Their hitting went really well,” Lions Coach Sandy Zhang said. “They [had] a lot of kills today, which is good.” 

The second set was a little closer. However, the Lions’ game plan stayed consistently solid. Senior Eliana Mannes stood guard by the front of the net, ensuring each ball made it over. The Lions closed out the set nicely once again, scoring four points in a row to win 25-18.

The Cougars entered the third set with a new, more aggressive approach that took the Lions by surprise. The game quickly became a defensive one for the Lions, who had to adapt to an increasingly threatening Cougar offense. Zhang said that her team needs to work on being much more offensive while at the net. “We’re gonna try to be more aggressive,” she said. The set was a close one, but the Lions eventually fell to the Cougars 21-25.

Evidently shaken by the Cougars’ sudden shift in momentum, the Lions struggled throughout the fourth set. Sophomore libero Nava Feldman dove to the ground, making countless saves. Despite the Lions’ efforts, however, the Cougars won once again 20-25.

The Lions went into the fifth and final set with one thing on their minds: winning. In spite of the apparent struggles that occurred during the second half of the game, the Lions returned to the force they had been at the beginning. After some back and forth scoring, the team went to a huddle for a timeout. Zhang is heard telling the Lions to “take a deep breath” and focus on “one play at a time.” After the timeout, the Lions went on to score 11 straight points, winning the set 15-6.

Junior Ella Elimelech is proud of her team and is already looking to the future. “We have to stay calm and not get ahead of ourselves,” she said. “[We] just have to go point by point.”

The Lions’ win keeps them in the running for the PVAC varsity volleyball playoffs. With an additional win next week, the team will be headed to the quarterfinals. 

“They’ve come so far,” Zhang said. “Each game they keep getting better and better.”