Wilson girls’ volleyball might have its most naturally talented squad since coach Carlos Briceno inherited Rebecca Strehlow in 2011, but he said his players need more time together in order to reach the peak of their potential.
“We have a lot of talent and a lot of height, but we’re still young,” Briceno said. “We’re in Division 3 this year, and we might start out a little slow, but I feel like this team has the ability to make a deep run in CIF if we grow throughout the year. We’ve just gotta learn how to win. It’s a process.”
Wilson only has four seniors on the roster, but Briceno called them the backbone for this team. Presley Parker and Elliott Barron are both outside hitters with experience. Tiara Moseby can play both outside hitter and defensive specialist, and Kayla Taitt is a middle blocker.
Taitt and junior Samiya Terry are both listed at 6 feet tall, and Briceno said his team will be its best when it can control the ball with good passing and lean on strong chemistry at middle blocker. Sophomore Mikayla Nolte will also line up in the middle.
“There isn’t a team out there that we would say is too physical for us,” Briceno said.
Junior outside hitter Gabby Sonnhalter will be one of the best offensive options in the Moore League this season, and she verbally committed to a preferred walk-on spot at UCLA earlier this year.
Wilson (2-4) has challenged itself in the nonleauge schedule, and has losses to Division 1 teams Los Alamitos, Edison and La Salle. Briceno said he was encouraged with the performance against Edison in particular when the Bruins took the first set off of the Chargers.
The Bruins haven’t reached the second round of the playoffs since 2014 when they played in the quarterfinals. Over the last three years, Wilson has only taken four sets off of Long Beach Poly and Lakewood in league action.