Westfield Wins North (Again)

Ethan Flaherty, Staff Writer

On May 16, 2018, Westfield High School Boys Volleyball team swept Chicopee Comprehensive (25-15, 25-11, 25-23) to secure the top seed for the North Division of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) Tournament for the fourth consecutive year. They are 17-0 on the season and 9-0 in the North Division.

“We aren’t done yet,” said Coach Tyler Wingate after the victory, referring to a match-up at Needham High School on May 21. Westfield is currently ranked second in the state to Needham’s number one.Undefeated in regular season play, Westfield has dropped just six6 games all year.

“We are working together really well,” commented Senior Captain Luis Castro.

Teamwork is the key to Westfield’s success. TWith a lot of talented veterans, mixing in and developing new players has benefitted the team. Freshman Alex Robitaille has played quality minutes in most games this season. Libero Gabe Santiago, a Senior, has helped anchor the defense while teaching Mike B. (a Junior) and Rabin G. (a Sophomore) the nuances of the position. Junior Ryan Rix has continued to provide relief as a substitute and skill as a middle blocker. Sophomore RJ Piper has pulled double duty as both a top junior varsity player and substitute player for varsity.

“Everyone has stepped up at different times. We rely heavily on the older players, but everyone has solidly contributed to put us in a position to win,” said Wingate.

WHS celebrated Senior Night on the same night they clinched the division. After a ceremony honoring the Seniors from both WHS and Chicopee Comp, the older players to whom

Wingate referred shone. Every sSenior contributed to the win:. Shane Kiendzior (13 kills, 8 digs, 2 blocks), Ryan Murray (9 kills, 3 blocks), Gabe Santos (1 kill, 2 aces, 2 blocks), Sam Pavlyuk (6 kills, 5 digs), Javi Santos (13 kills, 1 block), Luis Castro (33 assists, 2 blocks, 4 kills), Gabe Santiago (11 digs), and Prem Gurung (5 digs) thrilled the crowd at the well-attended contest.

Westfield Boys Volleyball has a tradition of winning, and after the game the players continued another Westfield tradition: a standing ovation for their fans.