Marasco, Barrett, Leehan catalysts for Seton-La Salle boys' volleyball squad
TribLIVE Sports Videos
The Seton-La Salle boys' volleyball team wrapped up the first half of section play tied for second place in Section 3-AA.
Seton-La Salle posted a 3-2 record, tied with Thomas Jefferson and two games behind undefeated Keystone Oaks (5-0).
South Park (2-2), Trinity (1-4) and Steel Valley (0-5) rounded out the standings.
“The section is really wide open this year,” Mark Felbinger, Seton-La Salle's veteran head coach, said. “I think any team can beat any other team on a given night.
“TJ, KO and South Park are tough. Steel Valley and Trinity are much improved over last year.”
Two key players for Seton-La Salle are seniors Eric Marasco and Elijah Barrett, who are sharing the captaincy role for the Rebels this season.
Marasaco, an outside hitter, and Barrett, a libero, led Seton to 3-0 victories against Steel Valley and Trinity, and a 3-2 decision against South Park.
“Eric has really been dominant in our wins this season. He has the highest kill percentage on the team, and has a really good jump serve,” Felbinger said. “His defense has dramatically improved, and he has been a great co-captain.
“Elijah has been solid as well. We moved him from outside hitter to libero, a role in which he has done really well. He has always been a great defensive player, and having him in the back row for us has really helped improve the team defense.”
Marasco and Barrett are the only seniors on the team this year.
They have been joined by Dan Leehan, a junior setter who earned a varsity letter last season, and a host of sophomores.
“Dan has performed admirably in his first year as the varsity starting setter,” Felbinger said. “He spent last year setting for several of the current varsity starters, so he is comfortable playing with them.”
The sophomore class is represented by Tereeq Smith, a libero; Justin Girouard, a setter; John Kist, a right-side hitter; Ben Grefenstette, a middle hitter; Dan Jesserer, an outside hitter; Gavin Ennis, an outside hitter/right-side hitter; Nick Pazuchanics, a middle hitter; and Chad Murphy, an outside hitter.
The Highlanders' starting rotation consists of Leehan, at setter; Barrett, at libero; Marasco and Murphy, at outside hitter, Pazuchanics and Grefenstette, at middle hitter; and Girouard and Kist, at right-side hitter.
Seton-La Salle was a senior-laden team in 2012, led libero Pete Smith and setter/right-side hitter Brandon Riley.
They were joined by senior middle hitters Jake Grefenstette, Brennen Heiser and Will French, who also manned the right-side hitter position.
“The team is playing better than I expected we would at the beginning of the season,” Felbinger said. “Graduating so many seniors last year means that we have four sophomore starters, so we are a young team.
“We are still struggling to play consistently, but when we play to our ability, I think we are a competitive team. We are in a playoff spot right now, which was our goal at the beginning of the season with such a young team.”
Seton-La Salle returns to section action Tuesday on the road against Thomas Jefferson, followed by a home match April 25 against Steel Valley.
Trinity, South Park and Keystone Oaks round out the Rebels' section slate.
“I'm hoping that in the back half of the season we become more consistent and more competitive,” Felbinger said. “We would like to play better against the two section teams (Thomas Jefferson, Keystone Oaks) that defeated us.
“Developing the sophomores is a top priority at this point. Our hitting, blocking, setting and team defense has room for improvement, and we are still trying to really click defensively.”
Felbinger is counting on Barrett to provide a defensive spark for the Rebels.
“Moving Elijah to libero should help with our team's defense,” he said.
Ray Fisher is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5820 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.