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Senior volleyball player weighs in on her final season

Victoria Perini, Staff Writer

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Fall season sports have begun and are seasons are in full swing. Here’s a little bit of what has been going on with the Yellow Jackets Volleyball team: halfway through the season, the AIC team is currently in fourth place in the Northeast-10 Conference, with six wins and only one loss.

With seven more games to go, they are hoping to perform as well as last year, and maybe this time, even bring the trophy back home.

AIC Senior and defensive specialist CJ Almaraz is a 21 year-old business management major from Camarillo, Calif., and is also one of the captains of the Volleyball team.

In an exclusive Yellow Jacket interview, CJ weighs in on her final season on the Volleyball team.

Yellow Jacket: What are your thoughts on the season so far?

CJ Almaraz: “I think our season is going very well, although we started out on a bumpy start and had some tough losses in the beginning we are now on the right track and I hope we can continue to get more wins. Although we are not as last year’s record, I think we will go just as far and surprise more and more teams.”

YJ: Is there any game that surprised you?

CJ: “The one game that surprised me this year was against SNHU [Southern New Hampshire University]. Being down by seven points in the fifth set, 14 to 7 SNHU. It was an amazing experience and definitely surprised me and the rest of the team.”

YJ: What do you want to achieve that you haven’t yet? Are you currently working on any of those right now, and if so, how?

CJ: “I want to win a conference championship. Right now, yes, as a team we are currently working towards it.”

YJ: What was the team’s best game so far?

CJ: “I think the team’s best game so far was against Adelphi. It was a game that really tested us mentally and physically. We went to five sets and won, but it definitely was not easy. It wasn’t only great that we won, but it really brought the team together and it gave us confidence, knowing we can trust each other in tough times.”

YJ: What do you think your role is as captain?

CJ: “What I think my role as a captain is to make sure that our team is always ready mentally and caring for the team. It’s not always what happens on the court that represents a good captain. A role I play as captain is by being the ‘mom’ on the team, I always make sure everyone is always good and safe and if they ever need help, I’m always there. I also try and bring a lot of energy to the team.”

YJ: What are your expectations for games that are coming up and the rest of your season?

CJ: “I expect to hopefully win the rest of our games this season and make it to the conference tournament.”

YJ: Is there any team that you are most looking forward to play? If so, why?

CJ: “I am looking forward to playing Bentley again, because we played them earlier this season and loss to them. It didn’t count as a conference game, so I am looking forward to playing them in our gym and beating them.”

YJ: If the team didn’t change much from last year, do you feel any difference this season in regards to how current players are being utilized?

CJ: “I do tell a little difference from players. New people are playing and others are playing more than they were last year. Our chemistry is a little different. We are not the same team as last year, but I believe we can be just as good or even better.”

YJ: What do you think the team needs to do to keep being successful?

CJ: “I think the team needs to stay focused and hungry for a championship. If we all have the same goal and drive I believe that we will be unstoppable.”

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Senior volleyball player weighs in on her final season