Boys’ & Girls’ Volleyball Speak About Their Hopes for the Season and What It Means to be a Part of the Programs

With fall settling into Port Washington, the boys and girls volleyball programs continue to demonstrate exceptional performances as they prepare for the final few games of their seasons.  

The boys ended their season last year with an impressive record of 13-2, earning them second place in the conference.  The girls had a tough time, as they ended towards the bottom of the standings in their conference.  The boys have continued their consistently strong performances, while the girls, after changing conferences, have displayed tremendous growth in their teamwork.

Led by Head Coach Jake Roessler and assistant coach Steven Lopez, the boys currently hold a record of 10-1, with their sole loss coming against Massapequa.  Seniors Dylan Epstein and Dillon Marvin were named Top 50 Long Island Volleyball Players by Newsday.  

“They have been a part of the program for years now and have played key roles in our success over the past few years.  They are excellent leaders on and off the court,” said Coach Roessler.

As their season continues, the boys make sure to develop their skills both on and off the court.  Not only are they teammates, they also consider themselves to be leaders and mentors.  They hope to leave behind a mark worthy of being mentioned as new players join the program over the years. 

“It feels great to be a senior.  I love to be a mentor for the younger kids, and I am super excited to go to college next year.  It is upsetting that it is my last year in high school, but it has been an amazing experience thus far,” said senior Landon Braider.

The common goal between the players and the coaches this season is to win the county championship.  The program last won the coveted title back in 2013, and last season, the boys made it to the finals, but unfortunately fell short after losing to Massapequa.  Roessler’s favorite moment from that season was being able to see the excited looks on the player’s faces when they made it to the county championship for the first time in over eight years.

“Our goal this season is to bring a County Championship back to Port Washington for the first time since 2013.  The players on the team are determined to accomplish this goal and the success comes down to the commitment of all 15 players who constantly push each other to work hard day in and day out.  We would also love to capture our first conference championship in over ten years,” said Coach Roessler.

As for the girls’ volleyball program, led by Head Coach Christina Bruno and Assistant Coach Pamela Giordano, their improvements from  last year have given them some much needed confidence.  

Our goals for this season are to win Conference AA/B2 and return to the playoffs.  The past two seasons, we have been seeded fifth for playoffs, won the quarterfinal match, and then lost in semifinals.  This year, in addition to hopefully being conference champions, we will look to advance past the semifinal round of playoffs,” said Coach Bruno.

 “If we continue to work together and take it day by day, we will have a strong ability to win the conference.  As we move into the postseason, we are hoping to make waves in the first round.  We want to show how hard we have worked to get here,” said Coach Giordano.

Last season, the girls fell to Massapequa in the semifinals during a five-set match.  Despite the disappointing end, Coach Bruno and Coach Robilotto, the former assistant coach, were extremely proud that the girls were not discouraged.

Right before the playoffs, we played Baldwin at home and lost to them for the second time during the regular season.  Traveling to their gym for playoffs, we were ready and prepared.  When [then sophomore, now junior] Julia Lassiter served the ball and it dropped to the floor for an ace and the 25th point of the fifth set, it was a moment I will never forget,” said Bruno.

In addition to displaying excellent athletic skill and sportsmanship in their games, the volleyball programs remember to give back to the community that supports them.  The boys and girls hosted an event called Dig Pink on Friday Oct. 14 in honor of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  The players were proud to raise awareness for such an important cause and to show that playing a sport is so much more than simply showing up to practice and earning playing time.

“I think that it’s important that teams include themselves in these events because we are a team committed to supporting each other, and we want to extend that support to the rest of our community,” said Marvin.