With five seniors lost to graduation, Nevada Union’s volleyball team may be a little shy on experience this season.
However, coach Marco Salcedo brought up three sophomores to work with the other returning players and the team is concentrating on reloading, not rebuilding.
With three returning seniors and three sophomores all starting this season, the Miners seem to have a nice combination of youth and experience.
Seniors Cody Curtis, Wes Plummer and Andy Reed are looking to lead the way, while sophomores Tyler Salcedo, Jason Adams and Cody George have bright futures with the experience they’re already gaining. Juniors Austin Schumacher and Nick Cancilla round out the mainstays on this year’s squad.
“We’re real solid, but we’re on the younger side,” Marco Salcedo said. “We’re definitely getting into the swing of things.”
The team is coming off Tuesday’s three-game win against Roseville which pushed the Miners above .500 on the season with a 3-2 record.
According to Marco Salcedo, the biggest competition in the conference will come from perennial powerhouses Placer and Granite Bay. NU faced off with Granite Bay on Thursday night but the results weren’t available at press time.
“If we play like we can play, those should be some real good games,” Marco Salcedo said. “They could be coin tosses.”
Curtis and Tyler Salcedo, the coach’s son, are combining to handle the setter duties this year. With two capable setters, Marco Salcedo has said he has changed his offense this season to accommodate the talent level.
“We’re running an offense with two setters,” coach Salcedo said. “A 5-1 offense has just one setter, but then your setter typically has to be able to play in the front row and be an incredible jumper or a lefty.”
The downside to having two setters is sometimes NU struggles to get up a good block.
“Tyler is a little bit shorter since he’s a sophomore,” Marco Salcedo said, saying when he goes up against taller front-row players it makes it difficult for him to help block. “With Cody, we’ve got a good blocker and an incredible hitter, though.”
That, Marco Salcedo said, allows the team to go with whichever setter is in the back row.
Tyler Salcedo, meanwhile, is just trying to soak up as much knowledge as he can this season.
“As a sophomore, I’m just there to learn,” he said. “I’ve got Cody in front of me and he’s a great setter. It’s a learning experience. I’m learning from him to understand the game and the position.”
Tyler has also been playing long enough to have learned that talent isn’t all a team needs to be successful.
“Our expectation right now is just to build team chemistry,” Tyler said. “A lot of us are new and haven’t played together before. We need to win some games, then we can start concentrating on things like taking first in league.
“We’d like to win some games, especially against Placer and Granite Bay.”
To contact Sports Writer Ross Maak, e-mail email@example.com or call 477-4244.
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