Redwood boys’ varsity volleyball sweep in a three set victory over the Drake Pirates


"Photos courtesy of The Redwood Log."

Sophomore Asher Heller (10) sets ball for sophomore Lucas Wright (2)

Kylie Horstmeyer

On Tuesday, March 5, Redwood boys varsity volleyball dominated in three sets to take home the victory against the Drake Pirates. After losing to Drake last year in the MCAL semi-final game, the Giants were determined to get tonight’s win.

Redwood brought the heat right out of the gate, nailing their serves and making tough blocks, gaining them an early lead in the first set. The Giants maintained high pressure on the Pirates and won the first set 25-11.

 “We controlled the ball well and kept our head on our shoulders. Together, we all around played as a team,” said junior standout Tanner Rich.

 Although the Pirates jumped on the Giants to gain an early 3-6 lead in the second set, the Giants stayed composed and regained control, taking the set 25-16. Rich explained that Redwood’s powerful hits and consistent serving played a big part in tonight’s victory.

After closing the game out 25-19 in a third set victory over the Pirates, the Giants won their first league game after losing to Marin Catholic in the MCAL opener.

“We came out pretty open-minded, the team kept their head on straight for the first two sets then finished through in the third,” Sophomore Colin Mcdermott said.

Head coach Tahan Minakov explained a key factor for their win was focusing on their side of the court instead of focusing on what Drake was doing.

“It was a matter of taking care of the ball on our side and doing what we can do to control the outcome,” Minakov said.

“Photos courtesy of The Redwood Log.”
Sophomore Pj Pfeiffer (3), junior Tanner Rich (4), and sophomore Colin Mcdermott (18) take their ready positions

After beating Elk Grove High School, Liberty High School, California Crossroads, and Pittsburgh at last Saturday’s neutral tournament the Giants took home the silver division championship. Minakov explained the momentum and winning mentality from the tournament carried on into tonight’s game.

“We had a really good tournament last weekend, and we are picking up from where we left off last year and I am looking forward to what they can accomplish this year,” Minakov said.

He says this year’s team is pretty much the same with only five new players and twelve returning.  As the season progresses, Rich and Mcdermott agree they are looking forward to gaining more team experience and team chemistry.

After last year’s young team Minakov is ready to coach a stronger and more experienced team. Minakov said even though the team is only two games into the season; his players are already comfortable on the court. He is excited to see where the rest of the season will take them.

“Photos courtesy of The Redwood Log.”
Junior Blake Parker (5) serving the ball

“I am looking forward to seeing the process from start to finish, how far they can go… we had a rough season last year with an inexperienced team. Now they all are a year older and have a year more of experience,” Minakov said. “They are getting bigger and stronger and are starting to understand the game a lot more,”  he added.

Going into their third MCAL league game the Redwood Boys Volleyball team take on the San Marin Mustangs on Thursday, March 7.

“We are going to focus on our ball control and keep our side under control, just find the court and keep our mentality solid,” Mcdermott said about the teams upcoming game strategy.