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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Second semester seniors boost their passions for volleyball

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Andy Zhu
New players are joining volleyball as time frees up for the rest of the year.

Since December, many seniors have experienced the rush of liberation that comes with clicking submit on their final college application. Many subsequently found several hours of extra free time every week and looked to fill up their schedule with new hobbies and sports. 

One such senior is Mateusz Palusinski, who started playing competitive volleyball, going so far as to try out for the school team. The sport has always intrigued him, but coming into high school, he honed in exclusively on basketball as his primary sport.

“I have been focusing on basketball for all my years at high school, and the program here at Saratoga basically runs full year,” he said. “We have open gyms, then preseason, then league, then open gyms again and then summer league. The process repeats itself as years go on.”

However, as basketball season comes to a close this year, Palusinski, a 6-5 varsity player, will find a significant chunk of free time to play volleyball for the first time since middle school. With no hoops to think about next year, he said volleyball will be a fun sport to focus on in the spring. He does not intend to take this boys’ volleyball season as seriously as basketball, rather placing his main intentions in having fun with his friends while exercising.

“I’m excited to play this year and try something new,” Palusinski said. “I can’t wait to play this sport after four years of distancing from it.” 

For his part, senior libero Nathan Lim looks forward to his fourth year on the team. This streak almost ended during his junior year due to his overwhelming workload and focus on soccer, but he managed to push through with external support. He said that managing two sports last year was difficult, especially since he dedicates at least 12 hours a week toward each sport when in season.

“I restarted my passion for volleyball last year through my teammates and the connections formed with them,” Lim said.

This year, finishing college applications has expedited his dedication to volleyball. He feels as if a weight has been lifted from his shoulders, and he does not have to stress over what needs to be done before or after practice.

As a senior, Lim plans to be a team leader this season. He hopes to set an example for the newer players and inspire them to love the sport just like he does.

“This year is going to be much easier mentally for me, and I’m extremely optimistic and excited to see how far we can go,” Lim said.

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