Penn-Trafford volleyball team ready to defend crown
By Matt Grubba
Published: Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012, 8:54 p.m.
Coming off a section championship, Penn-Trafford's girls volleyball team will try to repeat with a combination of youth and experience.
The Warriors bring back some key pieces from the team that went 9-1 to win Section 1-AAA and reach the WPIAL quarterfinals last year, but holes in the lineup remain to be filled after the graduation of a group of three-year starters that led the 2011 team.
“We have a lot of new kids that are going to be playing,” Penn-Trafford coach Jim Schall said. “I think we have some talent, and we have a couple pretty experienced kids returning. It's a good mix of new kids and kids that have been around, and I'm pretty happy with where they are.”
With the most experience coming back is junior setter Taylor Solo, who again will be Penn-Trafford's playmaker.
Middle hitter Cassie Patterson also was a regular in the P-T lineup last year, and she is the Warriors' only senior along the front line this year.
The rest of the upperclassmen are at home along the back row, as libero Samantha McGuigan and defensive specialists Lauren McGuigan and Jen Antill all are entering their final season for Penn-Trafford.
Given the positions of the Warriors' returning players, it comes as little surprise that ball control is what Schall described as his team's strength during the preseason.
“I think serving and passing, we do that pretty well, and that's going to keep you in most games,” the coach said. “We have experience at spots doing that, and Taylor always does a great job setting, so our offense should come along.”
Junior middle hitter Alex Heiman will join Patterson in the middle, while the team has three new outside hitters — sophomore Maria Palarino, junior Stephanie Jones and sophomore Angela Tarabrella — that will end up on the hitting end of the P-T attack.
Though many of the attacking options are young, Schall is confident his team will come around and be able to challenge for one of the top spots in the section.
“It was a fun year last year, and I think the kids would like to repeat that,” Schall said. “We're not as experienced, but I think the team is doing well, and there's more room for improvement than we had with our more experienced groups.
“I hope to win another section title, but that doesn't mean it will be disappointing if we don't.”
P-T's section this season includes last year's other playoff teams — Kiski Area and Latrobe — along with Norwin, Hempfield, Franklin Regional and newcomer Laurel Highlands.
The Warriors open their regular season Saturday at 9 a.m., when they will get a chance to face some of the WPIAL's best at the Mt. Lebanon Tournament.
Matt Grubba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5830 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: NHL stuck in stone age
- Steelers defense’s rapid decline looks similar to that of Steel Curtain’s
- PNC plans to do away with tellers
- Steelers notebook: Roethlisberger comes to Haley defense again
- Pirates general manager Huntington is searching for right player, deal
- Penguins’ Neal apologizes, vows to be better
- Highmark health plan enrollment skyrockets from Healthcare.gov
- Pope Francis is Time’s Person of the Year
- Pittsburgh police investigating two overnight robberies
- Groundbreaking held for hotel next to Meadows Racetrack & Casino
- Woodley says he’s fine with move to right side despite numbers