Nutley High School's New Boy's Volleyball Program
Boys' volleyball is the newest addition to the collection of sports at Nutley High School (NHS). The newly approved coaches consist of head coach Kevin Reilly and assistant coach Amy Gewecke who both previously coached during the girls' volleyball season. Tryouts will begin on Friday, March 11, and will run for about a week. Any male student from Nutley High School is eligible and encouraged to try out. The program will consist of a Junior Varsity and Varsity team.
Nutley High School already has a girls volleyball team and it is exciting to hear that the male students in NHS will also be able to participate in the competitive side of volleyball. Boys' volleyball is relatively similar to girls' volleyball, however there are several main differences. It is a spring sport, unlike girl’s volleyball which takes place in the fall, and the boys will play on what is known as a men’s net which is approximately 7 inches taller than a women’s net.
Mr. Joe Piro, Nutley High School’s Director of Athletics, was interviewed on the creation of the boys' volleyball team. West Essex High School was actually looking for a school to co-op with so an interest meeting was held for the students of NHS. Due to a large amount of interest shown in the sport, NHS decided to go ahead with their own program, not needing to co-op with West Essex.
“It’s the first time I’ve had to organize a new program really in 15 years,” Mr. Piro said. He had to hire coaches, purchase uniforms, and had to put a schedule together. Fortunately, NHS already had most of the equipment needed from the girl’s volleyball team.
Coach Reilly was asked a few questions about his plans and thoughts for the upcoming season. He stated that he has high hopes for a large turnout at tryouts. “Back in December we had over 40 students attend an interest session," Reilly said. "I think that with a little recruiting, we can raise that number even higher.”
Coach Reilly was previously an assistant coach for the girls' volleyball team and is now “beyond excited” about being the head coach for the boys. He is looking forward to the start of the season and getting out there with the team. He stated that there is absolutely a difference between being an assistant coach and being a head coach. “A greater amount of focus has to be put into the program as a whole instead of just skill development, strategy, and the well-being of your players,” he said.
As for plans for the season, Coach Reilly stated that “When a program is new, it's easy to want to tackle a lot at once.” His main goal for the team this year is to develop skills and get the program trending in the right direction. Most importantly, Coach Reilly wants to have some fun on the court.
It is great that NHS is giving male students a chance to play volleyball in a competitive nature just like the female students. Another program being added to NHS gives more opportunities for students to use social skills, learn good sportsmanship, and most importantly learn the incredible sport of volleyball.