Oakland High’s own boys’ volleyball team won the Oakland Athletic League (OAL) championship against Oakland Tech on Thursday, May 3, at Oakland Tech.
Even though the season was short, the players had a lot of fun playing with other schools. In their 5 games, the team learned more and more about the sport.
“Since I’m new to this team, I didn’t really know much about other teammates’ skills,” said junior Cody Dam. “But I heard that all the seniors were gone and there were only new people joining.”
O-High took their first win at a home game, and finished off the season winning an away game at Tech.
”Winning the championship this year means a lot to me,” said team captain Hyowon Lihinag-Tam. “We worked really hard since day one to come together as a team, and beating Tech twice brings joy to my heart.”
This year’s Wildcats were almost an entirely new team. The expectation for the team wasn’t very high, but as the team pulled together they have passed each other’s expectations.
Dam said, “My expectations of the team and myself have really reached past that level that I thought we could’ve reached.”
Senior Jimmy Luong said, ”The team was basically all new players, and given the fact that a lot of us had to learn how to play within 2 or 3 months, the other teams’ coaches were surprised how well we played as a team.”
The team was surprised to win the championship with the little time they had to practice with each other. Volleyball is a team-building sport in which the team has to learn to trust each other after they pass the ball.
“As a setter for my team, I learned to trust my team with the next hit after I’ve passed the ball,” said sophomore Limhuot Sung. “I learned to play as a team and my teammates know that if I’m not there they would be able to help me .”
Oakland High won the championship last year, so this is their second win in a row.
“This is one of the most talented great groups of guys I have ever played with,” said Lihinag-Tam. “I love you guys. I wouldn’t have rather been on any one else’s team.”