March 29, 2021 – By NJP (Photos courtesy of Matthew Austin)
Pascack Valley has had an excellent start to their season so NJP figured we would check in with our go-to person in the valley, Taylor Grady. Taylor joined the NJP Player Interview club a while back and shared her story about her journey to the varsity team. Here is a link to that article… CLICK HERE.
PV has had two quality victories starting the season with a three-set win over Tenafly and a big win this week against Ramsey. We asked Taylor where she thought PV fit into the Big North rankings?
“We are definitely up there!” Taylor shared. “The start of the season was a little rocky without any games and honestly, I had no idea what the competition looked like this year. We knew Demarest was going to be a tough game mentally and physically, however, we used every practice and some of the games to prepare for that.”
Pascack Valley took #4 Demarest to three sets last week, establishing Pascack Valley as a power team in the state. We asked Taylor to tell us about that game…
“It was rough. They’re a good team and have an amazing coach. We lost the first set due to our serve receive and lack of communication. We were able to take the 2nd set because Jenna Joroff, senior and middle, and Sabrina Arcilla, sophomore and libero, serves. This was a huge win and we hoped to carry that energy and momentum to the 3rd set to 25. Sadly our serve receive fell apart and we lost. This was a devastating loss to all of us, however, after a night of reflecting I felt we came to practice with a new attitude. We all hated losing, but it has given us a new motive and strength to keep improving to hopefully win on the 7th. “
Taylor posted 7 aces against Ramsey which made a big impact on PV’s straight set win. We asked the sophomore what can we expect on the service line going forward?
“I’ve been tweaking my serving technique for a little while and I was elated when I saw how that practice had paid off during the Ramsey game. As a sophomore, you can expect me to be an aggressive server who shouldn’t be underestimated on the service line. “
Pascack Valley has an absolutely brutal schedule this short-season, still having to face IHA, Old Tappan, Demarest, and Tenafly. How will this better prepare PV for post-season playoffs?
“Playing some tough teams will help PV better prepare for the different competitors we might face during the playoffs” said Taylor. “Each team we face has various talents that we can use to our advantage during other games. I feel IHA, Old Tappan, Demarest, and Tenafly will teach use new ways to improve in order to succeed for playoffs.”
In her original story, Taylor shared about the special relationship she has with her Aunt Sam. So we asked her how Aunt Sam is reacting to not being able to attend games in person?
Per Taylor: I got Sam’s feelings towards this matter when she stated, “I am extremely disappointed that I am unable to be there in person. It’s a very exciting time to watch Taylor grow as an athlete and see all the accomplishments she is making. Although there is YouTube and live streaming I still feel that I am missing the energy and excitement coming from her and her teammates that make this sport so much fun to watch and be a part of.” Personally, I love when she comes. It’s not often she gets to see me play anymore and when she does it makes me work extra harder to show her how much I’ve improved. She was my first coach, so it’s only natural I would want her to watch me grow!
With the schedule ahead, Pascack Valley is going to have to keep up the current pace against stiff competition. But we expect them to still get a relatively high seed in the North 1 section, group 3. Note that today’s scheduled game with Immaculate Heart has been postponed due to COVID protocol.