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Friday, September 22, 2017

“Rapids”—a part of a river that is swift and turbulent.

Turbulent would be the perfect description for the 2014-2015 JV Volleyball season. “Swift” is the adjective that applies to the development of Maayanot’s JV team, the newly minted champions.

In a season of highs and lows, a team with only two returning players from the previous season and comprised mostly of girls who had never played volleyball before stood atop the mountain, trophies held high. After a nerve-wracking, back-and forth, three-set win against SAR to propel them onto the Championship stage, the Rapids beat the defending champion Frisch Cougars in extra-points to take home the trophy.

Captain Miriyam Goldman led the way in dominant fashion providing solid passing in the middle of the court and hitting furiously out of the middle. The Cougars had no response for Maayanot’s offensive attack as sophomore co-captain Reva Lewitter kept the offense humming with timely setting and tricky tips that kept the Cougar defense guessing. Hitters Adira Levine, Danielle Pasternak, Sarah Berman and Sari Alexander all contributed offensively but even more so on the defensive end where rallies were both preserved and started by precision passes that enabled Lewitter to set the offense in motion. The defense helped maintain serve for the Rapids and that’s where they did most of their damage as Pasternak, Lewitter, Goldman, Alexander, Levine and company all excelled from behind the stripe. Freshman Sarah Berman’s service is especially noteworthy given the parameters under which she was serving.

After struggling with her serve for the better part of the night, Berman was on the line with her team trailing 19-20. A missed service would result in the end of the season, the end of the game, and victory for Frisch. The raucous Frisch crowd was at fever-pitch anticipating yet another trophy when Berman coolly served three straight championship-winning points that sealed the fate of both respective teams.

The Rapids personified team and personal growth throughout the duration of the season. Each player, even those that didn’t accrue the big minutes in the playoffs, had their moments of glory throughout the season. Every player contributed to the banner that will hang in Maayanot’s gym.

The mantra for the season has been to play “Rapids Volleyball.” “Rapids Volleyball” is volleyball that’s synonymous with team, and that’s precisely what propelled the Rapids to the school’s first JV Volleyball championship.