A LITTLE HOLLY-A LITTLE JOLLY-AND A LOT OF VOLLEY AT WHITESBORO ON SATURDAY
Jeff Pexton-MHTS/PGI Photo
If you weren’t roasting chestnuts on an open fire, riding in a one horse open sleigh or screaming at the car in front of you to move so you could get in or out of the shopping center parking lot, the place to be on Saturday was the Whitesboro Girl’s Volleyball Tournament at the newly remodeled Whitesboro High School Gym.
New Hartford, Vernon Verona Sherrill, Sauquoit Valley, Mount Markham and host Whitesboro played a very entertaining rapid fire style tournament.
The interesting format had four teams playing on two courts simultaneously for exactly 20 minutes. The team with the most points when the buzzer sounded was deemed the winner of volleyball’s version of Cliffs Notes.
Each team played each other four times for a total of eight games today. After a marathon’s worth of sprint style games, New Hartford’s Lady Spartans came out on top with a record of (7-1).
Whitesboro finished the day in second place with a record of (6-2), Mount Markham was third at (5-3) and Sauquoit Valley and VVS both finished the day at (1-7).
New Hartford’s Mackenzie Holbert was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
The All Tournament Team consisted of Holbert (NH), Brandi Blaszak (Wboro), Bridget Wilcox (MM), Carli Bartlett (SV) and Sam Kogut (VVS) .
For the diehard volleyball fans and parents in attendance today, the format of timed volleyball matches provided a really fun, fast paced version of this great winter sport.
Following a strong showing which ended with a win against VVS, several of Whitesboro’s Lady Warriors club were very happy to share their volleyball experiences with My Hometown Sports.
Beka Geller, Whitesboro’s senior Libero (the player designated to play defense) began playing volleyball in 7th grade and also plays soccer and softball.
After graduation this coming Spring, Bekah hopes to continue playing her favorite sport of volleyball in college at either RIT or Cornell.
As of now, the senior knows that she would like to study Nuclear Engineering, she just doesn’t know where, as of yet.
Beka credits her late Mother, Wendy, with introducing her and teaching her the game that has become her favorite. “My Mom played volleyball and so I played volleyball. I really had no choice in the matter, but I love it,” Beka said with a laugh.
Mary Pastorelli, also a senior at Whitesboro is having a tough time deciding between RIT and Wentworth College. In either case, she will study Bio-Medical Engineering and play soccer.
Mary said that she too has been playing volleyball since the 7th grade. ” I wasn’t good at basketball,” Pastorelli told MHTS, adding,”so I picked up volleyball as a Winter sport and I’ve had a blast ever since.”
Mary, along with Beka and fellow volleyball teammate Carly Lonczak were also key members of Whitesboro’s TVL Champion soccer teams each of the last three years.
Speaking of Carly Lonczak, that spirited senior provided MHTS with one of the more colorful (literally) interviews of the past few seasons. Carly said that her favorite color, without any competition, is green.
She also likes chocolate ice cream over virtually all other frozen dairy desserts. Lonczak’s favorite part about playing volleyball at Whitesboro is setting up players like Brandi Blaszak for the big kills.
“Setting up the girls up front, like Brandi and serving are my favorite aspects of the game,” Lonczak told MHTS.
Carly has been a Warriors volleyball player since 2009. She has loved the color green for many years more than that.
Brandi Blaszak made her way onto the All-Tournament Team today with some of the more thunderous kills of the day.
Brandi is a senior and hopes to study Education at either St. Rose or Brockport next fall. Blaszak and her Whitesboro teammates are off to a great start this Winter, rattling off a record of (5-1) in their first six Tri-Valley League matches.
The Warriors lone loss came at perennial power Oneida in a game that took every bit of 5 games before Oneida won by a score of 3-2.
“Oneida and New Hartford are both really good, but so are we,” Blaszak told MHTS, adding, “We are looking forward to playing Oneida again on out Senior Night in late January,”
My Hometown Sports wishes to congratulate all of the teams and players at today’s event for a great effort and for showing the fans what your fine sport is all about.
Thanks to the Whitesboro Volleyball Boosters for the invite at today’s fine event.
We also appreciate the hospitality shown by everyone involved. Congratulations on a very fun, competitive tournament.