Hampton girls volleyball team bids seniors farewell, looks to youth
With the Hampton and Seneca Valley girls volleyball teams missing out on the playoffs, the Lady Talbots bid farewell to its seniors on senior night, but it was the Lady Raiders who secured the win, 3-0 (25-4, 25-9 and 25-10).
“We had to put seven new people on the court, and they had to learn to work together and cooperate,” Seneca Valley coach Karen Martini said. “We lacked communication at the beginning of the season, but that and our passing got better.”
The Lady Raiders looked smooth, but Hampton had some strong moments, too.
“The whole season, we had so many different girls competing for playing time; it was tough to get a solid starting lineup,” Hampton coach Brian Tevis said. “We are a team that is new to some basics, but there are some things that could be promising for next year.”
Martini's group approached this game more comfortable than usual.
“The girls went in relaxed because they knew where the season stands,” Martini said. “They were relaxed, and they continued to work hard.
“I tried to tell them this season that they have to become finishers and need to execute. We got back on our heels when we got up on some teams, but in this section, with North Allegheny, Pine-Richland and Fox Chapel, the only time to relax is on the bus ride home.”
Unlike last year, where several seniors graduated, only Tricia Connolly and Madison Hoffman will move on this season.
A core of players with experience will be back — led by Angela Seman, Abbie Trzeciak, Katie Brown, Christina Karika and Sydney Martini among others — with their sights set on returning to the postseason.
“The kids grew up a lot,” Martini said. “The hope is to be more fine-tuned for next year.”
Tevis' group grew up, too, and although Sierra Downing, Paige Paskorz, Sarah Pregmon, Hannah Troup and Katie Virostek will graduate, 10 juniors are ready to step into more prevalent roles next season.
“The players (coming back) control their own destiny,” Tevis said. “Our seniors had a big role with leadership, and they will be missed, on and off the court.”
Jerry Clark is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-779-6979 or firstname.lastname@example.org.