Destin High Sharks take to the sand in beach volleyball

Tina Harbuck
The Destin Log

In their first home match on their own sand, the Destin High Sharks girls beach volleyball team made a good showing against Rocky Bayou on Monday afternoon. 

The Lady Sharks is made up of five pairs. Each pair was to play the best two out of three, but with daylight running out, the last three pairs played one game to 28. 

Destin's Elise Filipsky and Laura LaGuardia walk off the court after beating Rocky Bayou in beach volleyball.

Destin’s first pair, Laura LaGuardia and Elise Filipsky, won 21-17, 17-21, 15-13. 

The second Destin pair, Ana Vizcarrando and Anavay Vera, lost a close one 17-21, 19-21. 

Pair three for Destin, Kate Lauer and Madison Kelley, 28-23. 

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Pair four, made up of Nora Goff and Sophie Welborn, lost 28-24. 

And pair five, Sophie Welborn and Cynthia Vega, lost 28-26. 

“This season has been one of the best experiences of my life,” said Destin High Coach Ciara Reistad. 

Destin's Laura LaGuardia dives for the ball in the game against Rocky Bayou.

Reistad moved to the area from California to pursue her career as a beach volleyball player. 

“I was blessed to coach for a school and community that was so on board with my ideas and a vision for the future of beach volleyball in Destin,” Reistad said. 

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“The girls and I have had such a fun year training and growing together and individually. I don’t think there is a better feeling than seeing how much each girl has grown as a player and as a young woman,” she said. 

The girls have played 10 games, with pair one winning two matches, pair two has won six, and pairs three and five have won four matches each. 

Destin's Elise Filipsky bumps the ball up for the Sharks, while Laura LaGuardia is ready to make a move.

“Becoming a beach player is not just about learning the game, but to grow as individuals," Reistad said. "This season, we created a strong culture by growing our communication skills, work ethic, and attitude towards ourselves and others. I am so proud of all of my girls, especially Ana, Elise, and Laura for leading this team with not only your words, but with inspiring actions.”

Reistad was very complimentary of the Rocky Bayou Club as well. 

Destin's Elise Filipsky prepares to serve as her coach Ciara Reistad watches from the sidelines.

“Huge shout out to Elizabeth Medlock with Rocky Bayou Club to have the same vision as me and to push beach volleyball in this area. Elizabeth is a doer and it would not have been possible without her,” she said. 

“Our Principal Ms. Cruickshank, our Athletic Director Coach Dorn, and supportive community have been monumental in making this happen,” Reistad said.