Falcons find positives in tough CWC-East Conference
By Jacob Heid
AMHERST — The 2022 season was a redemption tour for the Amherst girls’ volleyball team. They came into the year with high hopes, battling in numerous matches that went to five sets. The Falcons finished 11-11 overall and 4-3 inside the conference.
Amherst had a rollercoaster ride of a season, with head coach Autumn Groshek describing the season as one where the team showed spirit.
“It was an up and down season. We played hard and just couldn’t finish sometimes,” Groshek said. “This was a strong conference this year, with most matches going to five games in the conference.”
The Falcons played in five matches that went to the final set, including the first match of the playoffs against Coleman. Everyone on the floor made plays at their positions to win games, but the net was the difference in most games. Sophomore Amara Beaudoin was a lengthy middle player for Groshek. Moving her around against Coleman was the difference in how she performed.
“It’s pretty obvious she is a huge asset to the team,” Groshek stated. “In the playoff game, we used her more than we have all season, and she was unstoppable.”
Beaudoin was a second-team All-Conference selection this year, but her head coach thinks she could have been a first-team recipient if she used her differently.
“We didn’t use her as much as we could’ve during the season because we had several strong hitters. If we fed her more, I’m sure she would’ve ended with a first-team.”
In such a strong conference, games switched momentum many times. The team bond and willingness to regroup after a set loss kept the Falcons in games. Groshek enjoyed watching that the most as the year progressed.
“I probably said this 100 times, but I loved this year’s team. The drive that they had was unreal,” she said. “They really wanted to win and when they didn’t, they wanted to practice harder to get those wins. They uplifted and encouraged each other all the time and that is huge when it comes to a team sport, knowing that your peers believe in you makes you want to play hard for the team.”
Even though the season did not end how they wanted, the players and coaching staff never folded.