Fermi boys' volleyball looking for success in state tournament

By Jennifer Holloway - Staff Writer
Enfield - posted Thu., May. 19, 2011
Josh Cheney goes for a jump serve in the Fermi game against Rockville on May 19. Photos by Jennifer Holloway.
Josh Cheney goes for a jump serve in the Fermi game against Rockville on May 19. Photos by Jennifer Holloway.

The Fermi High School boys’ volleyball team easily defeated Rockville 3-0 on May 19, taking the season record to 11-3. Having already qualified for the state tournament, the team has turned its sights to going far once they get there.

Coach Alex Pyznar said the team has been to the state tournament the last three years and received a bye each time, only to lose in its first game. This year, the team is hoping for another bye and a home game, as well as a win to advance to the semi-final round.

“If they stay healthy, want to win and play their best, they’re unstoppable,” Pyznar said. “At least to me,” she added with a smile.

“We have good teams in our class, but if we play them and play our game, it could be a win for us,” Pyznar said.

One thing that stands out about Fermi’s team is their love of the game. “They would play for hours and hours if I’d let them,” Pyznar said. She added that the team still wanted to practice during school vacations and close to prom. Even in the summer, the team is still practicing together. Junior Cody Brown sets up a net in his backyard and the team heads over to play during their vacation.

The Fermi team is small, with only seven varsity members. However, six are juniors and will return to play together next season.

In addition to being gifted on the court, many players excel in the classroom, as well. Junior Greg Zaylor, a second-year starter on the varsity team, has also been appointed a 2011 graduation marshall, meaning he is in the top two of his class. Several other players also cited academic honors as school achievements, and senior Nick Robert is proud not only of his success on the court, but of an AP chemistry award he received for his effort in the class. “I didn’t give up,” Robert said proudly.

“There is no lack of trying with them,” Pyznar said.

 

Coach’s Corner-

Fermi High School Boys’ Volleyball Coach Alex Pyznar

Three years as coach.

Thoughts on the season: “We made it to the tournament, which was our main goal. We wanted to make it, and now to do well there,” the coach said.

Senior: Nick Robert

 

Spotlight Players-

Cody Brown, Number 1, Junior Setter:

Brown has the best attitude of the players, according to Pyznar. She credits him with gathering the team’s focus before each game. An All-Conference football player and captain of the basketball team, Brown loves the team atmosphere of volleyball. His second year on the team, he said his strength is getting to every ball.

 

John Bowen, Number 15, Junior Outside Hitter:

A captain, Bowen is in his third year on the team, second year as a starter. He made the All-Conference team in 2010 and also plays for the Huskies in the off-season, an AAU-type team for volleyball. He is strong in his passing and digging, but commented that he is working on his technique with the serve.

 

Josh Cheney, Number 7, Junior Middle Hitter:

As a middle hitter, Cheney’s passion in the game is attacking the ball, citing his power as a main strength. All-Conference in 2010, an All-State nominee and team captain, he plays backyard volleyball in the summer with the team to stay in shape. He also plays football for Fermi.

 

Nick Robert, Number 16, Senior Back Row Opposite Hitter:

Robert, one of the team’s three captains, is a second-year starter. He loves the team aspect of the game, as he says his team is like a family. “[Volleyball] is collaborative,” he said. While strong in passing, Robert focuses on changing techniques of his weaknesses to get better. He also said he leans heavily on his coaches’ advice.


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