BY ARCEL CUNANAN
With only four remaining players from 2007’s roster, City College Volleyball Head Coach Ed Parker has high hopes of creating a reputable program, building on strengths the team already possesses during the highly anticipated 2008 season.
“When most people hear CCSF they automatically think about the football team,” said Parker, who is in his seventh year coaching at City College. “Because the majority of the students attending this school are commuters, it is difficult to get them involved with volleyball,” Parker added.
CCSF is home to the 2007 National Champion football team, which does set the bar pretty high for other sports teams. However, Parker foresees to change the student population and surrounding communities’ obliviousness towards the volleyball program.
Last year’s team ranked fifth out of six in the Coast Conference North Division, falling shy behind Skyline College. The 2007 roster consisted of eight players which included returnees Amanda Ly, Dana Lee, Cynthia Osorio, and Poe Malepeai. All-star Ly, who is also one of the three team captains, was listed fourth in the conference with her digging skills, maintaining an overall percentage of 6.99.
Perfection was not a necessity to make this year’s team. Instead, Parker was not only looking for players who could contribute to the team with basic skills and knowledge, but more importantly the right attitude to learn and play. There are 12 girls on the team who range from ages 17-23 and come from local high schools such as Abraham Lincoln High School, Balboa High School, and Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory.
Parker feels the team’s cohesiveness, camaraderie, and leadership will help with practice. The basis of the team’s strength comes from defensive skills.
“The bread and butter of the team will be our defense. The girls are quick and light on their feet,” Associate Head Coach Aziza Bledsoe said.
Parker and Bledsoe both lay out high expectations for their team as they are hopeful to win their conference, and reach the highest level of competition, which is always the goal.
“I would love to see the girls walk out of the gym 100% happy of what they did on the court. If they have any regrets, my job as a coach was not done. If they are happy and proud, that is a job well done,” said Bledsoe. “We will do even better this year. We want to grow every year and build on that.”