BVT Volleyball Sets Clear Goals
By Chris Villani Sports Reporter/Columnist · April 06, 2012
Blackstone Valley Tech volleyball made the district tournament last year and won the Colonial Athletic League, so both of those tasks are on the Beavers' list of goals for the 2012 season. BVT can add another to the list, however, as this year will be the first time a State Vocational Tournament will be contested in boys' volleyball, and the Beavers want in.
"The kids are really excited this year," said head coach Brian Lehtinen. "We have made it clear that we want to win the league and get to the state voke."
Setter Matt Stone and outside hitters Ryan Belmore and Greg Barlow have been lost to graduation but the Beavers bring three starters and their libiro back from a 2011 squad that was the 16th seed in the Central Mass tournament and lost in the first round to top-seeded Lincoln-Sudbury. "Losing Stone is going to be a challenge," said Lehtinen. "We have a few younger players who could fill the void so we are going to examine our options there."
One of the possible replacements for Stone could be senior libiro Nick Manguso. "He was a really good libiro for us last season but he as good hands and I could see him setting," said Lehtinen, who also said Matt Bushey and Marc Tetreault could see time at setter this year. "We have a lot to chose from."
The Beavers' strength should lie in the offense, which will be spearheaded by junior captain Anthony Allen. The outside hitter was a league all-star in 2011. "Anthony is a great player," said Lehtinen. "He is a great hitter, he can serve and pass, he has all the skills. He should be one of the top players on our league."
Insider hitter Patrick Gonya is a senior who returns with plenty of experience under his belt and lefty outside hitter Baron Apple completes a formidable front line. "Have those three hitters (Allen, Gonya, Apple) will help our offense tremendously," said Lehtinen. "Our biggest strength is going to be that line."
Lehtinen is also confident when assessing the landscape of the league. "Keefe Tech has been good, as have Assabet and Worcester Tech," he said. "Last year it was a battle between the four of us and I think it is going to be competitive again, but I think we should be near the top."