Oakmont and Woodcreek ready for breakout yearsBy: Cameron Salerno
The Oakmont and Woodcreek girls volleyball teams come into 2018 on two different paths. On one side is Oakmont, who is coming off a very impressive 2017 campaign, which saw them go 8-6 in the Capital Valley Conference last season and was good enough to earn a playoff spot before falling to Rocklin in four sets.
Woodcreek in 2017 was led by a young sophomore team, and the lack of experience showed in the mighty Sierra Foothill League as the team went 0-12 in SFL play. This season, the Timberwolves return 11 players from that team, and they have high hopes those retuners will step up.
“I think all the returners are going to help us a lot this season,” Woodcreek head coach Brian Jew said. “They have a good bond together and have a great time playing out there together.”
However, with Oakmont losing a few key seniors and Woodcreek’s young core developing with prior varsity experience, the tables seem to have turned early in 2018. Monday night it showed with Woodcreek knocking off Oakmont in four sets.
“I think we worked hard in the offseason, and we are finally finding that team chemistry,” Jew said. “Our youth is showing, but we're stepping up in the key points, and our goal is just to keep up.”
Woodcreek in the offseason only lost two seniors to graduation while Oakmont lost six. With old faces departing, both teams will look for younger players to step up.
“Our seniors made a big impact for us last year,” Oakmont head coach Devon Quok said. “We lost our setter and two of our outsides to graduation, so we have a pretty young team.”
Overall in the match, Woodcreek took the first set and Oakmont slipped past Woodcreek in the second despite a late rally. However, Woodcreek in the final two sets was too strong for Oakmont, taking the game in four to kick off the 2018 season.
Both Oakmont and Woodcreek will compete in a new leagues this season. Oakmont will look to tackle the new Foothill Valley League, and Woodcreek will compete in the CVC with crosstown rivals such as Roseville.
“Our new league is pretty tough volleyball-wise,” Quok said. “I think we will go out there and compete very well this year, but we definitely have our work cut out for us.”