The Cards meet in a huddle while playing Gahanna Lincoln. L to R: Cole Stewart, Danny Fennie, Finn Rubin, Luke Featherstone, and Dylan Johnson
The Cards meet in a huddle while playing Gahanna Lincoln. L to R: Cole Stewart, Danny Fennie, Finn Rubin, Luke Featherstone, and Dylan Johnson

TWHS Boys’s Volleyball Setting Up for Success this Season

March 30, 2023

As spring sports start up, all eyes are on the Boy’s Volleyball team. Following multiple seasons of success, including a divisional championship with the best class the team has seen, the team must now fill the spaces of the 9 seniors lost–two of whom committed to college–with new talent in order to rebuild a strong core. The varsity, JV, and JVB teams recently held their tryouts, and now work hard to prepare for the season.

Former varsity player Bo O’Leary has left big shoes to fill for his cousin Finn Rubin, literally. Despite that, Rubin believes he can make a name for himself.

“I think I’m good enough to not just be ‘Bo’s Cousin’,” Rubin says.

As one of five sophomores on varsity, Rubin will have to work hard to develop his skills.
This season his main focus is to “get noticeably better and have a high hitting percentage.” Though Rubin has been playing volleyball for only a year, he shows great talent. He wants to be known for his skill in his own right.

“When I keep improving people will see that,” Rubin said

In the off-season, Rubin plays on a club team and understands that the level of play on varsity is much different from club level.

Guiding the team to success is Coach Brian Lawless. Following the graduation of nine seniors, Lawless looks forward to the coming season.

“Seeing how our young guys develop and contribute to the program, but also how this senior class leaves their mark,” Lawless said. The new players bring “ a lot of newness” and “a lot of optimism”.

Lawless believes things will go well this season. He also looks forward to seeing the team’s comparison against other programs and believes that they can be successful at all three levels. For this upcoming season, Lawless hopes to compete and win in the present and build for the future.

“As far as a program standard, my goal is always to win the OCC and compete for a Regional Championship,” Lawless continued.

Moving through the season, Lawless will focus on the fundamentals, break down communication, and work on the mental aspects of volleyball. He explains that having the players find outside opportunities to work together will create a strong team. Lawless is “proud of the early season work the guys are doing, and [the] leaders are doing a great job stepping up and communicating effectively, and everyone is demonstrating coachability, [as well as] a desire to get better.”

One of the senior captains, Cole Stewart, looks forward to “getting back into it and having fun playing with [his] teammates and continuing to win.”

As a varsity captain, Stewart has to take on more responsibilities and set an example for his fellow teammates. His goal to be the best captain he can be is to “ be able to lead my team to be the best we can be and win as much as we can,” Stewart said.

He hopes to be someone that the rest of the team can look up to and be a positive role model, and he intends to continue to be loud on and off the court “ encouraging and hyping up [his] teammates, and constantly bringing positive energy.”

Danny Fennie, another senior varsity captain, looks forward to working hard in his new leadership role and “ getting to know the guys better and bring them together as a team.” To set a positive example, Fennie thinks long term for his goals, and hopes to bring the team wins back to back in the OCC and claim a third regional championship. As an upperclassman, he plans to work throughout the season on building chemistry with the younger players and grow together as a team. Fennie’s personal goal for his final year is to “break the TW single season dig record.” This year a few things will change, “the big one being our system, we are changing from a 5-1 to a 6-2,” Fennie said.

Fennie continues to work during practices to bring energy and determination to his fellow teammates.

JV player Thomas Hayward shows up for the team and brings the energy. Though he has only been playing for a year, his skills continue to improve with dedication and hard work on and off the court. Hayward looks forward to making improvements in all aspects of his game. “I am also excited to build connections with my new teammates,” Hayward said.

He plays with fellow sophomores, freshmen, and a couple of junior players. This season Hayward hopes to “play up on varsity and to lead [his] team on offense and defense”. Even though he is not a captain, Hayward helps players and is a positive role model to all his teammates. His focus will also be to be very vocal and lead the team through a successful season. Hayward believes that “the talent that is in the program is exciting [and] the young players have great attitudes and lead well.”

You can check the volleyball schedule for upcoming games, show up and be loud!




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