Carissa Carbone. All-State in Vollleyball.
TORRINGTON: To say Torrington volleyball star, Carissa Carbone was excited when she learned that she was named to the prestigious All-State squad for her excellence on the court would be a massive understatement.
“Coach (Christine Gamari) texted me,” Carbone said. “She asked me if I was sitting down. I kind of ran around my house for a few hours.”
The senior hitter was a remarkable force on the court this season as the Raiders made only their second ever appearance in the State Finals.
Her ability to rise above the net is not something one would expect from a 5’7” player but during her four years with a program, it was her specialty, the massive kill that forced teams to know where she was at all time.
Torrington posted a 25-2 overall mark this season, the most wins in a single season in school history.
The Raiders ran the table in the Naugatuck Valley League regular season with a 17-0 mark, won the NVL Tournament with a shutout of the Wildcats before falling in their third meeting with Seymour.
Getting this honor is bigger than Carbone and she understood why.
“It feels great because it puts our school on the board,” Carbone said.
Gamari, a standout three-sport athlete in her day at THS, was thrilled with the selection.
“It’s a great achievement,” Gamari said. “We try to put people up for nomination each year so it’s awesome that we were able to get some state recognition. That’s huge for her and huge for our program. It shows respect for her and respect for our school as well.”
Torrington may have changed some perceptions this year with their long and strong run which featured a strong out of conference schedule that helped her team become battle tested.
“People sometimes say that the NVL is not that strong a volleyball league,” Gamari said. “But hopefully we turned some heads with both (Seymour in Class M) teams being in the state finals together. I’m not sure who else made it, but I’m sure you’re going to see more NVL players on the list.”
The selection of Carbone is the second Raider to achieve the honor. Julia Giampaolo is the other.
This team took on the head coach’s personality this year, and Carbone exemplified every trait that coaches want.
“She’s so well rounded in terms of her skills,” Gamari said. “She can move to any position you need her to play and she does it so willingly. She is just a great person with a great attitude, she never gets down on herself. The kids look to her for leadership too.”
With another season to play in the spring (softball), who knows what additional honors this talented senior may take home by the time she is done.