The Orange Lutheran girls volleyball program is back on the court this year with four full squads and is ready to take on a new season.
“I think everyone is so excited to be back in the gym once again,” says OLu girls volleyball head coach, Henry Valiente. “You can see and feel the energy. They know what their goal is, and they are really working hard towards it.”
That goal is a Trinity League title and another deep CIF playoff run. After advancing to the CIF-SS Division 3 quarterfinals last season and dropping the match to Etiwanda, the Lancers are back in Division 1/2.
The varsity roster will be led by senior returning starters and outside hitters Paige Buzzerio and Londyn Giles. They are joined by senior middle blocker Naila Ia who has made great strides in her offseason training and preparation.
“She has improved vastly,” says Valiente of Ia. “She is stronger. She is someone who is going to contribute a whole lot in that aspect.”
Veteran setter Lily Underwood and the libero sister duo of freshman Kenzie Houston and sophomore Jaedyn Houston will also be strong contributors and leaders.
“She’s a great leader,” says Valiente of Jaedyn Houston. “That libero role is big for us, because they are the leaders and take charge of the defensive schemes. She does a lot of that for us.”
The varsity team kicks off their season Hawaiian-style as they travel to compete in the Sacred Hearts Tournament in Oahu, Hawaii. Beginning August 17, the Lancers will face Honolulu-based opponents in Le Jardin, Radford and Punahou. Valiente is hoping that the strong competition on the road will set them up for success when they return home.
“This team is a breath of fresh air, and they get along so well,” Valiente. “We have a great core that can be top 3 in our league, but we’re gunning for No. 1, that’s for sure. I believe we have the know-how in volleyball to really have a great showing.”