The Pierce College women’s volleyball team cranked up the heat on Saturday Sept. 5 as the team defended its winning streak against rivals Glendale Community College.
The Brahmas won all three sets (25-8, 25-14, 25-20) making this the team’s sixth consecutive win of the season. The Vaqueros rallied in the third set, but the match went to the Brahmas.
From the court sideline, Head Coach Nabil Mardini watched the match unfold. His keen eyes never once missing a beat.
This season marks his fifteenth as the head coach of the Pierce women’s volleyball team and Mardini likes what he sees.
“We have a lot of energy and some good chemistry this year,” said Mardini. “It’s only early [in the season] but we’re making progress every day. It’s like night and day.”
This dramatic transition is not just the result of the fresh faces added to the team and its compatibility. It is also in part thanks to the returning team members.
Sophomore Setter Rachel Lods plays a large role in running the team’s offense. Her mindset when entering a game is the same regardless of who is playing on the other side of the net.
“We can’t really control what the opponent does or how they play,” said Lods. “Basically we have to take care of what happens on our side of the court.”
Opposite of Lods is outsider hitter Chelsea Lawrence. A member of the Brahmas defensive line Lawrence protects the net while blocking hits from the opposing team.
Despite the intense game mounted by the Vaqueros, Lawrence felt that she and her teammates gave a solid performance.
“Throughout all of today we kept going. It was consistent and good,” said Lawrence.
Wearing her #4 jersey with pride, Lawrence feels that the Brahmas have improved greatly because of the team’s sense of comradery.
“We really are like a family,” said Lawrence. “There definitely is that energy there.”
“If you can put together people or players of the same mindset, chemistry is easy then,” said Mardini.
For Mardini the pressure of the Vaqueros match and the approaching game is minimal.
“You don’t want to downplay it but at the same time you don’t want to overplay it,” said Mardini. “It’s just part of the game.”