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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Volleyball wins league game at Senior Night


   The Gabrielino girls varsity volleyball team hosted their Senior Night on Oct. 6 against Rosemead, ending their league season with a win in three sets. 

   Senior Night commemorates the hard work of the seniors on the team, equally celebratory and sentimental as the girls play their last league volleyball game in high school. 

   The big gym was filled with supporters from both high schools, firing up the players’ spirits with roaring cheers. People were waving towels, holding up signs with encouraging slogans, and jumping up from their seats when their team scored. Rosemead’s spectators cheering and chanting was at the same loud volume as Gabrielinos, it got intense for the lady eagles while making their plays in this vital game.

   Senior Night was bittersweet for senior Kate Hamamoto, volleyball captain, who described, “When we would win a point, I was thinking about how I am one more […] step closer to finishing.”

   The Eagles’ initial victories were tight, with a final score of 25-23 in the first set. Both teams put up a solid fight, being neck and neck throughout. Gabrielino scored their points by making close saves and hard-hitting spikes.

   “We had a lot of energy coming out and, I knew we were going to do really good that night but also it was kind of stressful,” recalled senior Keona Sample.

   The girls found their groove in their second set, winning 25-19. Gabrielino scored through successful serves, spikes executed by Hammamoto, and junior Madison Lau setting the ball over the net close enough to cause Rosemead to miss the ball. However, there was some miscommunication about who was going for the ball that caused the team to miss. 

  “I was a little bit nervous since we had a lot going on for us this game, if we did not win that game,”  Sophomore Audrey Ko, stated, “there would have been a possibility of us not winning the league.”

      Earlier this season, Rosemead defeated Gabrielino in five sets. Since then, the girls have worked hard to win their Senior Night against them.

   “[Rosemead] has some strengths and weaknesses, some of the hitters and defense in the back row are good, so the competition was stiff,” senior Tiffany Wu analyzed. 

   Victory was achieved in the third set, 25-21; Rosemead led every set in the first half because Gabrielino could not get the ball in time. Some of the lady eagles were falling over and tripping over each other, but the strong plays in this set were the blocking and protection of the net. The teamwork was also notable, along with serves securing points frequently. 

      During the last set,  senior Bene Kanotz expressed, “I was really overwhelmed with [bittersweet] feelings, but I put that at the back of my head and really concentrated and focused on winning that set.”

   After Gabrielino won the third set in a row, which won them the whole game, the cheers from the stands were louder than ever.  Players were on the floor crying with happiness and relief, hugging each other and huddling together as a team.

   Gabrielino girl’s volleyball has been dominating their league for several years, and it was vital for them to keep the title. 

   After the game, the seniors received a bouquet of flowers and had sashes to wear. In addition, the girls decorated the team room for the game to support the occasion. Each senior heard a speech from their underclassmen.

   Moving forward, Girl’s Volleyball focuses now on CIF, having a competitive and focused mentality.

    “This year, we have a lot of potential…I have a lot of pride for this team because I feel like this is the one year we can [succeed],” Hamamoto continued, “there is a lot of weight being put on our shoulders, but this is the group that is going to go far.”

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About the Contributor
Bren Belmonte
Bren Belmonte, Staff Writer
Bren Belmonte is a Photographer and Staff Writer with three years of experience on our newspaper team. Outside of journalism, Bren enjoys cosplaying, photographing friends, reading manga, watching anime, and listening to music. Bren chose the journalism class in sophomore year after encouragement from family members in the industry. Since then, they've recognized it as a future passion and career interest.
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