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Years in the Making A deeper look inside Dasari's volleyball career

Senior. Captain. Recruit.

Those three words describe Gautham Dasari’s volleyball career. Starting in sixth grade, Gaudi, what his friends and coaches lovingly call him, has been climbing to the top and impressing coaches along the way. In the fall, Dasari will be playing at NYU and majoring in business.

Read below to see three coaches reflect on Dasari as a player.

PAUL CHIU

Paul Chiu has been coaching MV boys varsity volleyball for the last nine years. Ever since he first met Dasari, his thoughts hasn’t changed – he is a leader.

“Gaudi struck me as mature beyond his age,” Chiu said. “He always had great work ethic since 8th grade – that hasn’t changed.”

Chiu’s initial impression of Dasari was how developed he was as a player. He recalls the middle school tryout where Dasari played hard and how he continues to see that work ethic five years later.

Photo taken with permission by Gautham Dasari.

JONAH CARSON

On a volleyball team, coaches look for diversity in player ability. For Club Director and Head coach of the 18 Red team, Jonah Carson believed that Dasari is a very competitive player. Carson describes that its Dasari’s work ethic that shines on the court when he plays well in a crucial moment, showing off that his hard work over the years has paid off.

"What I appreciate most about Gautham [is that] he's unassuming," Carson said. "He puts in the work and, when the big moment comes, he knows he's prepared himself to make the big play."

Despite Dasari soaring through MVVC teams, Carson points out that Dasari’s willingness to learn hasn’t changed.

“I appreciate his thoughtfulness. Some guys are resistant to change; especially as they get successful. [Gautham] continues to want to improve and learn,” Carson said. “Being physically adaptable is an important skill. But being mentally and emotionally adaptable is a rare thing.”

Carson first saw Dasari as a 14-year-old playing at the level of MVVC’s age 14 team. He recalls seeing Dasari making admirable plays for a 14-year-old, which is what initially impressed him. However it isn’t just Dasari’s playing that continues to astonish Carson, but also the way his teammates look up to him.

“That's one way you know a guy is special,” Carson said, “To see his improvement over the past several years has been great.”

Photo taken with permission by Gautham Dasari.

José A. Piña

As the head coach of a collegiate volleyball team, José A. Piña II is on the lookout for recruits at tournaments. In 2017, Pina met Dasari for the first time at a tournament and was immediately impressed by his game awareness. After looking into him, Pina learned that Dasari played for MVHS and MVVC and was confident that these qualifications strengthened Dasari’s background.

Pina tracked Dasari since his sophomore year in 2017, and saw him improve through watching numerous tournaments. As time went on, NYU scouts were impressed by not only Dasari ability to attack the ball, but how Dasari kills the ball while doing so. In awe of Dasari’s ability to control the ball, Dasari became one of NYU’s top-choice recruits in his junior year.

"Our initial opinion of Gautham proved to be correct. He got taller, his arm swing got better, his ball control got better and he just kept improving," Pina said. "As we found out that he was interested in our university, it all came together to make him a top recruit of ours."

From talking to Chiu and Dasari’s family, Pina learned that Dasari is a level headed player and has strong concentration, something noticed by Chiu and Carson as well.

“[Dasari] is a big time clutch performer,” Pina said. “He doesn’t seem phased by what’s going on around him when he is playing. And when you combine all of these attributes, it is very hard not to think of him as a student athlete who will fit nicely and be an important piece in any program.”

Photo taken by Vincent Dusovic.

Created By
Rajas Habbu
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