By Stephanie Timblin
Senior Outside Hitters Marissa Hamilton and Alissa Gregory led the Ellicottville Eagles Varsity Girls Volleyball team to a victory over Springville Griffith Institute (SGI) in a decisive three match set Monday morning (25-17, 25-17, 25-23).
The Eagles are returning four starters from the 2015 season where they finished with an overall record of 9-10. Now in her second year as Varsity Head Coach, Katie Auge has high hopes for the 2016 season.
“Last year in the beginning of our season we juggled a new merge with West Valley, as well as travelling back and forth to West Valley because the new gym at Ellicottville was not yet finished,” she said.
“This year has been a much smoother transition. We are able to practice in our new gym and the girls already know each other. They are working together and pushing each other each day to become a better team. The leadership coming from our three seniors: Marissa Hamilton, Alissa Gregory and Brenna Green will be a key factor to our success this season.”
The team is rounded out by returning starters sophomore Linnea Jimerson and Junior Mackenzie Czapla. Other members include: Erika Seltzer, Ashley Frank, Janel Stuve, Sierra Maybee, Malorie Chamberlain and Elissa Cole.
“Three of the teams that beat us last year [Randolph, Catt-LV, Portville] jumped up to a Class C this year, which means that we will not face them come playoff time. Though we have high hopes to go far in the post season, we will focus on playing each game one at a time along the way,” Auge said.
Junior Varsity Head Coach Dan LaCroix and his team lost to SGI in a three set match 25-18, 18-25, 25-27.
The teams will face Olean on Thursday, Sept. 9. JV begins at 4:30 p.m. and Varsity starts at 6 p.m.