Macho Volleyball, a big part of Winterfest traditions.

Macho Volleyball, a big part of Winterfest traditions.

Winterfest at our school comes with many treasured traditions. One of which is Macho (boys) Volleyball.

“It’s kind of fun to be in charge of all the guys,” said senior Bri Tilton, a varsity volleyball player and senior team coach. “They have to listen to us. And to share my favorite thing, volleyball, with them and let them experience the same things I get to experience is pretty cool.”

And, it’s a good thing for the guys to experience the girls’ coaching as well.

“I think [the coaches] did a great job of putting together a good team in the time we had and putting us in the right positions to see who would fit on the team,” junior player Ryan Dunn said.

Having to play the game has, just like Powderpuff, given one gender a look into the other’s world.

“They know what they’re doing,” junior Bryce Clay said. “I feel for them because I coached Powderpuff football and it was difficult, but they do a good job. They’re all nice and they know what they’re talking about, so it’s been good.”

As beloved as Macho Volleyball is, there is a downside to everything. Unlike Powderpuff, Macho Volleyball is restricted in how many people can be on a team. This means that of the 32 juniors who tried, out only 18 were allowed to play on the team.

“I really don’t think it’s fair to the guys that took the time to get up in the morning to go and try out, and then ended up not getting to participate,” Bri said. “I think everyone should have the chance to participate in the Winterfest activities, even if they’re told they might not play, it’s still being a part of the team.”

However, it isn’t just unfair to the guys who don’t make the team.

“It breaks our hearts to cut people,” Bri said, “and you don’t want to tell them that they can’t be with their friends and enjoy Winterfest. It was really hard for all of us to even pick who to cut.”

Whether you’re a junior who’s new to Macho Volleyball, or a senior that did this last year, everyone’s excited for the chance to play the other grade.

“I’m looking forward to the chance to go up against the seniors because I know everyone is going to be super pumped, ready to play, and ready to go,” Audrey Tubbs, a junior coach, said. “I’m really excited to see them get to go and play.”

Many of the guys who play Macho Volleyball for Winterfest have basically no experience playing the game. So, it’s up to the coaches to make sure they’re ready for their big game.

“They’re actually doing a really good job of passing in general,” Audrey said. “They’ve been doing a pretty good job of getting it high to the middle of the court, which is what we ask them to do. They’re pretty much understanding that’s the best place we can set it up. So now they’re keeping it pretty controlled, which I’m surprised about, so that’s pretty good.”

For the junior coaches, it’s all about what they can do to have a fighting chance against the seniors.

“We’re definitely working a lot on passing and keeping it controlled,” Audrey said. “And, working on trying to set it up so we can be really aggressive against them and have a good chance of putting the ball down and finding places. Trying to get them to focus is almost the hardest thing because they pretty much just always want to play and we try to keep it controlled; but, they just kind of want to do their own thing. So, it’s kind of been difficult to get them to focus on doing one thing and trying to get them to do it right.”

But, what they’re lacking in experience, they make up for in gusto.

“I went to the games the last two years as a freshman and sophomore, and watching them play made me want to play,” Ryan said.

And, the excitement coming from the senior guys is especially great.

“I think since they know what they’re going into, they’re not as afraid,” Bri said. “They’re all pumped up because it is their senior year and they just have all the motivation to do it.”

No matter what part you play in the Macho Volleyball game, there is a lot to be taken from this loved tradition.

“Girls like [junior] Kendall Gardner and Reese Weslow are going up and making a kill; I respect that,” Bryce said. “I’m not a hitter, but going up and blocking… I really respect that. It’s a [much] different sport than I thought.”

And no matter what part one plays in Macho Volleyball, everyone is very biased as to who they think is going to win.

“Oh, I think [juniors] are going to get the win on Monday for sure,” Ryan said.

Bryce, though slightly less sure, still believes it’s going to be a real fair fight.

“[The juniors] are big underdogs,” Bryce said. “I’ve heard from a lot of people that the seniors are really good. At first I thought we were going to get killed because our team wasn’t looking too great, but today it really stood out to me. We were scrimmaging more, and we’re a pretty sweet team, so I think we’ll give them a fight.”