Brennan Ventura and Connor Champion have known each other for five years. They played on the same club basketball team before making the transition to volleyball upon entering high school. It’s a journey that keeps on getting better, as both players have made dramatic improvements since earning spots on the varsity team this season.
Champion, a junior middle blocker, and Ventura, a sophomore setter, are two of the key reasons why San Benito High could be in contention for a top-three finish in the Monterey Bay League next season. Champion has made steady strides in every phase of the game, and Ventura has become the starting setter as the team recently switched from a 6-2 offense to a 5-1.
That means Ventura plays in all six rotations, which has made him more excited for the game.
“It’s really cool playing the 5-1,” he said. “I can dump the ball and trick the outside blockers. I can run cool plays and set the back row and middle as well.”
Both Champion and Ventura credit the coaching staff for helping them improve in a short amount of time. Balers coach Dave Ventura—Brennan’s dad—hired quality assistants in Jesse Esqueda, Adrian Masoni and Gabe Ventura, Brennan’s older brother. Masoni has helped the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Champion with all the little details necessary to become a better player.
“Coach Masoni has helped me a lot with my footwork and the spacing and positioning of my hands,” Champion said. “They’ve all got to be in the perfect spot to make a difference.”
Champion has put in extra practice…
click here to read more.