Special to Colorado Community Media
Boys volleyball became a sanctioned sport in Colorado three years ago and has steadily been growing.
“The level of volleyball is rising and rising,” said Legend boys volleyball coach Ryan Lindstrom. “It’s getting better and it’s getting bigger."
When the Colorado High Schools Activities Association sanctioned boys volleyball before the start of the 2021 season, players and teams were reluctant to jump in.
“When it was first sanctioned, Legend was the only school in Parker with a team,” Lindstrom said. “We had kids from Ponderosa and Chaparral try out for the team. This year, Douglas County made the amazing choice to go 100 percent. So all Douglas County schools have boys volleyball teams, which is fantastic.
“We’re lucky at Legend to have some really good players. We have 42 boys in the program. We didn’t cut anybody. We want them to keep playing volleyball.”
Legend’s Paxton Wright has been playing volleyball since he was youngster.
“I was super happy (when boys volleyball was sanctioned),” he said. “I have a deep passion for the sport ever since I was young. I just love it and want it to become a bigger sport in the state.
“When I first started playing it was a club level thing and then my freshman year at Legend we got second in the state, last year we got third and this year we are trying to make it first," he said.
Legend (6-1) is ranked third in the CHSSANow.com state poll, defeating ThunderRidge, 3-0, in a Continental League match on March 23. The set scores were 25-10, 25-15 and 25-17.
“We think we’re pretty good,” said Lindstrom. “I think we’ll be in the top five or six in the state for sure. We expect to be very competitive through the whole year.”
Wright is gratified about Legend’s start this season.
“We’ve started off pretty strong,” he said. "We’ve got our chemistry going. Communications is the key to our success. We’re just swinging well, fighting well and passing well and playing at a good level.”
Wright, a 6-foot-4 junior, had a strong game against ThunderRidge (0-3) with 13 kills, three aces, two blocks and 10 digs.
Senior Reece Lindstrom had six aces and 12 assists while senior Tommy Gibas had five kills and DavisRoach contributed nine assists.