Sometimes there can be a fine line between dreaded moral victories and acknowledging a team’s growth even after a loss. But despite Woodinville’s 3-1 defeat against Ballard last Wednesday, the signs exist of better things to come for this long-struggling program.
Woodinville’s second-year coach, Andrea “Hammer” Roelen, was pleased with the season debut.
“We were really going into the match wanting to be fearless, intense and attack the ball,” Roelen said. “And many times we saw that. We attacked more than we have in the past. We came back more than we have in the past. To me
that’s already a statement of who this team wants to be.”
Woodinville came out inspired and won the first set 25-20. They went on to lose the next three sets 26-24, 25-18 and 26-24. But in each of the losing sets, Woodinville never gave up. The Falcons scratched and clawed and wouldn’t surrender until the final whistle.
One exciting element to this team is senior Emma Daoud-Hebert. She’s 6’1” tall, powerful and athletic. Her Beast Mode smashes will strike fear into opponents this fall.
“Emma DH is a force and we need to get her involved in the offense as much as possible,” Roelen said. “When she hits the ball, there’s a dent in the floor.”
Other players that did good things against Ballard include Makenna Mosher, Danielle Morris, Zoe Friedman, Collen Ochs and captain Cate Quilantang.
“We definitely do not take this [loss] in a negative way,” Quilantang said. “This is our practice preseason. It’s practice to get better. We’re still building that balance and chemistry... As a captain, I want to come out with a positive, encouraging attitude, especially for the younger kids. They need a good captain to lead them to hopefully State. I’m excited for this year.”
Woodinville travels to North Creek this Tuesday, and then to Seattle Prep on Thursday.
“We need to communicate better so that we eliminate some of the unforced errors,” Roelen said “But this crew is talented... I’m excited for what I’m seeing. I would have loved to have this one, but for me in these two weeks before conference [games start], this is time to learn, time to practice. Time for us to start believing in what we can do as a group.”