ShareThis Page

Seton LaSalle volleyball earns share of section title

| Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, 11:33 a.m.
The 2017 Seton LaSalle girls volleyball team
The 2017 Seton LaSalle girls volleyball team
Seton LaSalle girls volleyball's four seniors include, from left, Alyssa Elcker, Ellie Grefenstette, Bridget Hart and Maggie Syverson.
Seton LaSalle girls volleyball's four seniors include, from left, Alyssa Elcker, Ellie Grefenstette, Bridget Hart and Maggie Syverson.

The section championship boiled down to the results of the final week of the regular season for the Seton LaSalle girls volleyball team.

And the Rebels prevailed in impressive fashion, winning at home against Serra Catholic, 3-0; followed by a 3-0 victory at Keystone Oaks.

Seton LaSalle and Serra Catholic finished tied for first place in Section 4-AA with 11-1 records.

“We had a great match last week for our senior recognition against Serra Catholic, a great opponent in our section,” said Amy O'Keefe, the Rebels' first-year coach. “I'm really proud of the way these girls have worked since the beginning of our offseason. The girls have been focused on achieving their goals and doing the necessary ‘little things' every day in practice. They are a really fun but competitive group that wants to succeed and are willing to put in the necessary effort.”

Seton LaSalle drew the No. 5 seed for the WPIAL playoffs, and will play Thursday in the first round against Waynesburg, which edged Keystone Oaks, 3-2, in a preliminary-round match.

“The girls have been playing well in the weeks leading into our playoffs,” O'Keefe said. “We plan to continue what we've started throughout the regular season and play our best every day. We are going to stay focused on one game at a time and how we can best prepare for our next opponent.”

The Rebels' starting rotation consists of seniors Bridget Hart (right-side hitter), Maggie Syverson (outside hitter/defensive specialist), Ellie Grefenstette (outside hitter) and Alyssa Eicker (outside hitter); juniors Jenni Pitts (middle hitter), Jess Darkowski (middle hitter) and Emily Farley (libero); and sophomore Chloe Lestitian (setter).

“One of our strengths is our team's ability to play together,” O'Keefe said. “Every player has accepted their role and are working to do their part to the best of their ability.

“We have great senior leadership with all four of our seniors having starting roles on the team. They are all experienced players that have helped set the expectation for this season. Three of our returning juniors, Emily Farley, Jenni Pitts and Jess Darkowski, have been making great contributions defensively and offensively, respectively. And Chloe Lestitian, our sophomore setter, has shown great improvement this season.”

Hart and Syverson are the Rebels' captains.

Hart, who also plays basketball, is involved in SADD, Big Sister Little Sister and the Environmental Club at Seton La Salle.

“I think the team keeps getting better and better as the season progresses,” Hart said. “Our biggest strength is the connection we have with each other on and off the court. We come into practice every day with a mentality that every game counts, and we all have to do our job no matter what team we are playing.

“I think what helped us beat Serra Catholic the second time we played them was the way we prepared for them in practice, and having no doubts in our mind that we were going to come out on top. We worked hard all summer and we are peaking at the right time. Once we get on a roll, there is no team that can stop us.”

Syverson, who will compete on the girls lacrosse team in the spring, also is involved in SADD, Big Sister Little Sister and the Environmental Club, as well as the Science Club and dance committee.

“This team means so much to me, and I know all the girls feel the say way,” Syverson said. “We have had a strong mentality this season, and I know we will continue with that. We come into practice every day ready to work and push each other, which has really helped us.

“I think the strength of this team is (our) communication, and just our overall drive and bond with each other. I can't wait to see how the playoffs go for us. I know we are capable of making it very far. We will see where it takes us; I hope for the best.”

Ray Fisher is a freelance writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using 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.