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Redwood Bark

Twelve seniors were presented with awards to recognize their commitment to being outstanding high school athletes (Photo by Zoe Gister).
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Setting the standard: Positivity in beach volleyball

Freshman Haley Boyarski extends her arms to block a spike (Photo courtesy of Kim Wagner)

As the warm Spring weather approaches, many indoor volleyball players look for an alternative sport to fill their schedule while enjoying the sun. Luckily, Redwood has a club beach volleyball team that specializes in learning and developing skills while also having fun 

Chris Glave grew up playing high school beach volleyball in Santa Barbara, California and continued to play when he moved North to Marin. He went from coaching to playing,  starting at Tamalpais High School with the boys’ team, before ultimately coming to Redwood to coach the girls’ beach volleyball team. As the coach for the Giants for seven seasons,  Glave gets the most joy from seeing his players learn and develop.

“Bringing in excitement to the game [as a coach makes] players want to come back, play more and want to learn more. It’s always exciting when someone is just learning because [once] they’ve been [outside] a little bit, they come back for more and then they play in college and then it leads to continuing friendships,” Glave said.

The beach volleyball team after a big win in Santa Barbara (Photo courtesy of Kim Wagner)

No matter the weather, encouraging positivity trumps all aspects of the game when it comes to Glave’s coaching. Despite winning or losing, the overall attitude and energy of his team is what he focuses on while coaching. Glave believes it is important to have a good time on the sand no matter how many wins and losses. He instead focuses on the overall energy and attitude of his team.

“It doesn’t matter about the success of wins and losses. It’s a success [for] them to have confidence to keep trying. Not everybody plays on the sand and many come from indoors. [When] they get used to being outside, with sunshine, wind or rain, it might be toes in the sand that leads to the excitement of being out there. The players just get out of their comfort zone and start to try a little harder and work a little harder,” Glave said.

Recently, the team traveled to Glave’s hometown of Santa Barbara to play against three different high schools. Junior Sophia Mauro remembers the nerves that came with playing in these matches. 

“[Playing in Santa Barbara] was really fun. We were nervous because it was raining and every single match [we played] we lost at the first location. None of us were in a bad mood about it. We all bounced back and won our first match of the [tournament at the next location],” Mauro said.

Redwood players support their team while waiting to be called onto the sand (Photo courtesy of Kim Wagner)

The players could keep a positive mindset despite initially losing matches, which led them to win two of the matches during their time in Santa Barbara. Glave took the wins as a huge success.

“This is the first year that Redwood has won any of the matches down there. We still talk about it a month later,” Glave said.

Treating each other with kindness while being themselves allows the team to feel like a family. Mauro explains how her relationship with the coaches affects her playing.

“My favorite thing about beach volleyball is the connection with your teammates because it’s only two on two-,” Mauro said. “You get close with your partner [and coaches] and it feels like a family alongside being outside in the sun, which is always a bonus.”

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About the Contributor
Caroline Veley
Caroline (Birdie) Veley is a Sophomore at Redwood High School and a cub reporter for the Bark. She loves anything outdoors, watching the sunset, and quality time with her friends.