Girls JV Volleyball Team Does the Impossible

Meilani Calcutt, Writer

Let’s be honest, no one really cares about JV sports unless your daughter or son plays on the team. At Loyola Academy, JV sports don’t even get a shout out for an accomplishment during the morning announcements unless you beg them. In this case, the Loyola girls JV volleyball team deserves all the recognition they could’ve gotten.

Unexpectedly, a group of 14 girls went undefeated and only dropped 2 sets during their season. Their finishing record was 32-0. You could understand that this is an amazing accomplishment for the girls to do what no other team has done at Loyola Academy. Yet, they didn’t get recognition from Loyola til two weeks after their season ended. 

I get that JV sports are unconsciously overlooked due to the comparison to varsity levels, but here I am, giving them the recognition they deserve. 

When I spoke to head coach Caroline Gajzler on how she felt about the season, she said, “It was amazing to be able to coach a team like this. I didn’t appreciate how little recognition these girls got for accomplishing something so rare, but I’m glad I was a part of it.”

Yes, 32-0 is an outstanding record, but overcoming their opponents was truly the best part of it. The JV volleyball team defeated Mother McCauley twice. Once in a regular season game which was finished in 2 sets, and once in the GCAC championship game in 3 sets.

Mother McCauley is a rival for most somewhat good teams in the Chicagoland area, but especially for Loyola. Not to praise McCauley, but they have won state 15 times and were number 1 in the nation for three years in a row. 

When talking to a JV player, she told me the story of their championship game. It was a nerve racking day for all of them. They had to win three games in a row to win the championship and stay undefeated.

The first two teams were a breeze, and they thought McCauley would be too since the last time they played, Loyola won each set by 10+. They won the first set easily.

Next set was a disaster. Their starting outside broke her ankle early on in the game. They were at a disadvantage, but they pushed through and eventually won it all. 

One thing she also remembers is how different this McCauley team was from the first. She claims that there wasn’t a single player on the court that she saw at the first game. They think McCauley brought down varsity players to defeat Loyola since their JV team couldn’t do it themselves.

Well, I guess it didn’t work out for them because Loyola didn’t let them win. 

All in all, I applaud the girls for their outstanding season. Not only did they not drop a single game, they crushed McCauley, which is a win for all of Loyola.