ShareThis Page
Sports

Unity key to Leechburg's success

| Monday, Oct. 17, 2005

If you happen to pass the Leechburg volleyball team's bus after a road win, you might be inclined to turn down your radio just to hear the tunes coming from the bouncing vehicle.

“Almost all of the girls are involved in chorus,” senior player Gina Peterman said. “We'll sing mostly oldies or chorus songs; it gets pretty rowdy sometimes.”

The Blue Devils have had a lot to sing about in recent years as they've made the Class A playoffs every year since 2000.

The team is making noise again. This year's squad is 9-2 overall — 8-1 in Section 1-A — and has its goals set high.

“We're hoping to win the section,” Peterman said. “I also think we can do as well in the playoffs as we did last year.”

Leechburg defeated Bishop Canevin in the first round of the playoffs before losing to Farrell in the second round in 2004.

Peterman is one of eight seniors on the 15-member team who have been playing together since seventh grade. That's when coach Ellen Toy was the girls' physical education teacher and encouraged a lot of the players to try out. Consequently, the team has grown extremely close because of their similar interests.

“We're all really close,” Peterman said.

Toy is pleased that the girls have such close friendships, because it helps them succeed on the court, as well.

“The team unity carries over onto the court, and their uniqueness makes them play so well together,” Toy said. “They know each other's good points and trigger points, and they're good at making sure everyone's on the same page.

” Peterman believes that their unity was not only forged by their close friendships but by the encouragement of their coach, as well.

“She emphasizes teamwork and getting along with the players a lot, in addition to the offensive and defensive aspects of the game,” Peterman said.

Toy places such an emphasis on teamwork that she has not named an individual captain. Instead, she places the responsibility on the seniors, describing them as “the nucleus and knowing what to say at the right time.”

“Losing them is going to be hard,” Toy said. “They've been such mentors to the younger players.” Toy is extremely confident with the development of all her players and feels privileged to have the dedicated workers that she does.

“I think it's their mind-set; they give it their all,” Toy said. “They walk into the gym and make it happen; that's something that coaches strive for.”

And as long as Leechburg continues to work, the oldies will continue to be heard.

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.

click me