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Quaker Valley girls volleyball qualifies for WPIAL playoffs

| Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Quaker Valley girls volleyball coach Mike Vavrek considers seniors Alyssa Bartling and Jade Kost ideal captains.

Besides being strong leaders, they rank among top players statistically.

Both players are big reasons the Quakers, who were 8-1 overall and 6-1 in Section 2-AA entering this week, have clinched a WPIAL playoff berth for the second straight year. Quaker Valley qualified by beating Ambridge, 3-1, last week.

“(Bartling and Kost) are very well educated on the game and don't make a lot of mistakes,” Vavrek said.

Bartling, a 5-foot-3 outside hitter, leads Quaker Valley with 78 digs and 44 aces. She is third in kills (49).

Kost, a 5-foot-4 outside hitter, is second in kills (58) and aces (41) and third in digs (55).

Teammates the last three years, Bartling and Kost have become friends, which Bartling said helps them as captains.

“We think alike,” Bartling said.

Kost said being a leader comes naturally.

“I've been (one) since seventh grade,” Kost said.

Vavrek said the two players have similar temperaments.

“They're very vocal and good in demanding that younger girls stay focused,” Vavrek said.

Bartling and Kost were instrumental in rallying the Quakers after they lost to Central Valley, 3-2, last month. Quaker Valley won its next three section matches.

The Quakers traveled to Central Valley for a rematch Wednesday. Results were not available before this edition's deadline.

“I put it in the girls' heads you can't quit,” Bartling said. “You lose, you move on.”

“I told them to forget about the past and just play harder,” Kost said.

Junior Michaela Sobecki likes that the captains offer only constructive criticism.

“They don't nitpick,” Sobecki said. “What they say is encouraging.”

Besides Bartling and Kost, statistical leaders include junior Kathryn Wroblewski (first with 62 kills), Sobecki (second with 76 digs) and sophomore Hannah Kley (third with 27 aces).

Junior Ashlee Bacvinskas leads the Quakers with 239 assists.

Sophomore Miasha Beck had 33 kills playing in only five matches.

Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.

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