The Lady Cannoneers continued their winning streak last night, gaining a victory at home, in the last conference match against Tompkins Cortland. The match was over in three sets: 25-7, 25-20, and 25-16. Sophomores Jenna Wilson, Mallory Harter, and Alexa Runyon were honored and helped to bring the winning streak to 12.
#1/4 Libero, Captain Mallory Harter: I remember the first day I met Mal, sitting out in the gym lobby, talking to her before she signed her letter of intent to play softball. I remember my first thought being, this girl will always put the team first, no matter what. And she did just that; in 2017 Mal stepped in as a setter for the last 6 weeks of our season. I think she cried every night with frustration, but she never let on to me that she absolutely hated that position!! Last season she finished with 575 assists, 218 digs, and 196 service points. This year, Mal has once again stepped into a position she didn't start the season out in. Since Jenna's injury she has been our libero; but this year it is a little different, this one is like "home" to her, and it shows. So far she has 310 digs and 161 service points. She continues to be the work-horse on this team and is SO excited that we will be making it to post-season this year. Thank you Mal, for your total commitment to the "good of the team" and your leadership.
#12 Middle Blocker, Alexa Runyon: Last season Alexa contacted me after we had already started in August and was interested in trying out for the team since she has recently moved to Watertown. When I noticed on her Athletic Interest Form that she was 6'1" I called her immediately! As soon as she walked into the gym we all knew she would make a huge impact on the success of our season, and lucky for us she returned for round two this year. In 2017 Alexa compiled 93 blocks and 140 kills, in 2018 she so far has 72 blocks and 179 kills. Lex is always putting the team first and always looking for ways the team can bond together, but mostly looking for ways we can win. After a less than stellar 2017 season, she was determined this year would be different. She spent a lot of time helping me with recruiting and along with Jenna, they convinced Jeff to let us travel to NYC for preseason. Although it took us a few weeks to find the right rotation and position for everyone, we have figured it out and Lex continues to be a dominant force at the net. As we enter post-season play the team will continue to rely on Lex to put up a big block and lead this young team as far as possible. Thank you Lex, for your complete dedication to rebuilding this team and for your passion for the game, the girls look to you more than you know.
#10 Libero/Defensive Specialist, Captain Jenna Wilson: Last season Jenna took on the role of defensive specialist and took advantage of any time she got out on the court. She compiled 92 service points and 178 digs. Ever since our season started in May with open gyms, Jenna has been motivated to wear that yellow jersey. We had many conversations and she was willing to do whatever it took to become our libero. She wanted nothing but a successful season and to be out on that court every second, and she was, until September 6th against Finger Lakes at home. In serve receive there was a miscommunication and Jenna paid for it with a broken thumb. I called a time-out and told her she would have to finish out the set, and she did; fighting back pain, tears, and frustration. In just 19 sets played Jenna racked up 70 digs and 35 service points this season, but we are hoping she can join us again as we head in to post-season. Thank you Jenna for leading this team, even if you haven't been out on the court, we know how important this team and its success is to you.
Alexa finished with 11 kills and Mallory had 5 digs and 6 service points. Jenna is still on the injured list but is hopeful about getting cleared to play next week. Allison Burrows finished with 24 service points, Maggie Vazquez added 5 kills, Alyssa Evans chipped in 3 kills, and Nicole O'Connor had 2 kills. Grace Gehrke put up 2 blocks, Sara Archer finished with 2 digs, Savanna Baker added 7 digs, and Kelsey Finster finished with 23 assists. This victory brings the MSAC Tournament home on October 20th since Jefferson is in 1st place. But first, the team travels to Cayuga on Sunday for the last three regular season regional games. Be sure to come out next Saturday to support the girls in their quest to become confernce champions! The start time will be announced soon!
Alexa, Jenna, and Mal: Although it took two seasons to get where we wanted to be, it is because of your leadership, dedication, passion, and hard work that we are able to give ourselves the opportunity to play in the post-season. These talented freshmen standing with you have learned what it takes to be successful at the next level. We have a lot of work left to do this season, but enjoy the rest of the time you have left as a team, as a family. Your memories will last forever. ~Mama