2016 Torrington Girls Volleyball. A Strong and Seasoned Group.
TORRINGTON: The expectations are high this year for the Torrington girls’ volleyball team but that should come as no surprise considering who their head coach is.
Christine Gamari, now in her sixth season at the helm of the Raiders (77-33 record), has never been one to settle for just competing and being happy to be there. Her drive and competitive nature has taken hold of this program and the results speak for themselves.
In 2015, the Raiders posted an 18-4 record which earned them a share of the Iron Division Title and with a star studded line up returning, the goals for 2016 will be just as high as they were a year ago.
The Raiders finished as the third ranked team in Class L a year ago but dropped a 3-1 decision to #14 Avon in the second round of the State Tournament.
With girl’s enrollment at Torrington down this year, the Raiders are dropping to Class M this year and will face a new group when it comes to State Tournament time in November.
Gamari lost only one key starter from a year ago, All-Iron and All-Star Senior middle hitter, Caitlyn Cornish, who is attending Post University this fall.
It helps to have a seasoned team step on the court every match and this year there are plenty of standouts who benefitted from their outstanding 2015 campaign.
The Raiders will be led by one of the top athletes at the school, senior outside hitter Carissa Carbone, who earned All-Naugatuck Valley League honors a year ago and just has that knack for knowing what to do and where to be at all times on the court.
Having an experienced setter is the key to any team’s success and the Raiders have a top one in senior Jayleen Colon, who made the All-Iron team a year ago.
Gamari knows she has a team that has been there and knows how to get back there as well if they follow the leaders on the team.
“This season we return a team that has seen a lot of Varsity-level experience,” Gamari said. “We won't need to focus as much on the Xs and Os of our systems, instead focusing on playing and staying together as a team. Minimizing unforced errors on our side of the net might make the difference in some close matches this season.”
Other returning athletes include seniors Ali DuBois (opposite hitter/setter), Jolie Fox (middle hitter), Gabby Ballesteros (defensive specialist) and juniors Candyce Jewett (Libero), Lauren Gaghan (outside hitter), Isabel Weber (defensive specialist) and Shae Eucalitto (opposite hitter/setter).
Junior Nina Lestrud joins the team this year as an additional middle hitter.
As for the NVL this year?
“We are again in the Iron Division with pretty competitive volleyball squads in Woodland, Naugy, Wolcott, and Watertown,” Gamari said. “The Brass and Copper divisions also have talented squads. We will only focus on one match at a time and not look too far ahead.”
This is Torrington volleyball, led by one of the best three sport players ever to come out of the school in their history.
Count on them competing at the highest level.