Tomahawks double 'Dig Pink' goal
By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Glastonbury - posted Fri., Oct. 26, 2012
The Glastonbury High School girls' volleyball team took its worse loss of the season on Oct. 19, but the players still felt like winners, as they raised nearly $2,000 for breast cancer research at the fifth annual "Dig Pink" event.
The Tomahawks (as well as their opponents, the RHAM Sachems) wore pink jerseys and held a variety of fundraising activities before, during and after the game, including several raffles.
Coach Tracey Hollenbaugh said more than $1,860 was raised the night of the game, with other donations trickling in during the following week. With the website for donations open until the end of the month, Hollenbaugh said the total would likely be near $2,000 – double the team's goal of $1,000. She said the players were excited about the event, and had made signs to advertise the "Dig Pink" game.
“Every year, it's gotten better and better, and the players have gotten more into it, and more appreciative of the cause. It's been a very positive event for them every year,” Hollenbaugh said.
The players' parents also deserve a lot of the credit. “The parents were unbelievable,” she said. “Without them, it wouldn't have been as great a success.”
As for the game itself, Hollenbaugh said RHAM, which is undefeated, was a tough opponent, but it may be the kind of test they needed before the Tomahawks turn to the playoffs. “I think we played a little back on our heels, instead of going at them,” she said, adding that she doesn't remember seeing as many visiting fans in the Glastonbury gym for any sport.
“We're excited for the post-season,” Hollenbaugh said, adding that her team's three losses were against quality opponents – Bristol Eastern (16-1, ranked #2 in CCC), Woodstock Academy (14-4, #9 in Class L) and (RHAM (17-0, ranked #1 in CCC).
“We really haven't gotten beaten by anyone who’s ranked below us,” she said, adding that other than those losses, the team has only dropped two sets all season.
In order to raise its level of play for the post-season, Hollenbaugh said her team needs to focus on playing its own game better. “It's having the mindset that we know we can play with the top teams,” she said, “and that we can do better things more consistently. Sustaining our high level of play has to last for longer periods of time. The players know that if we open the door for a better team, they'll come barging right in. We also have to learn to shut the door when we're ahead.”
Finding that extra gear, the coach said, will come in practice. “We need to turn free balls into something better, which we don't do all the time,” she said. “We need to be better more often when we're out of system, which means if we don't get the ball to our setter on the second pass, we still need to make something out of it.”