Seton-La Salle netters receive postseason accolades
Seven members of the Seton-La Salle girls’ volleyball team have been lauded as all-section players this year.
Laura Nath and Morgan Henderson, both senior outside hitters, and junior setter Michelle Sanders, were first-team selections for the Lady Rebels.
Junior Nicole Colligan and freshman Bridget Hart, both middle hitters, were second-team selections; while senior defensive specialist Sommer Waskiewicz and sophomore right-side hitter Megan Manion were third-team selections.
Nath (first team), Sanders (second team) and Henderson (third) also were honored as WPIAL all-stars.
Seton-La Salle finished as the Section 6-AA runner-up in 2014 with a 12-2 record, and compiled a 16-5 overall record.
The Lady Rebels edged Knoch, 3-2, in the first round of the WPIAL Class AA playoffs before falling to eventual champion Ford City, 3-1, in the quarterfinals.
“This team battled through a lot of adversity,” said Larkin Hogel, Seton-La Salle’s athletic director who stepped in as head coach for Kevin Hummert at midseason. “We were disappointed to lose (to Ford City), but I think everyone will eventually look back and realize how much we accomplished given the circumstances.
“It is hard to change coaches at midseason, but this team had very strong upperclassman leadership which made the process a lot easier. We battled inconsistency on the court all season, and unfortunately when you play poorly against a good team like Ford City, you don’t give yourself much of a chance.
“Our three seniors will be missed, but we are returning a lot of talent and everything they went through this season will make them better players going forward.”
Seton-La Salle’s only two losses in section play came against WPIAL runner-up Thomas Jefferson, including a 3-2 loss at home at the end of the regular season.
“Despite everything my team has been through this season, I could not be more proud,” Nath said. “We came together as a team and rose above all the obstacles thrown at us.
“Going back to the TJ game, that was the best match we had all year. I would say that was probably the best volleyball match I have ever played, with the intensensity and (level of) competition. My whole team played with heart and passion. The level we played at, with the crowd cheering us on, made that game the most memorable. We are always the underdogs playing against a team like TJ, and it was indescribable the way the competition was that night. It was a game to remember and a good way to end our section. I wouldn’t want to trade playing my last home game any other way.”
Nath and Waskiewicz said much of the team’s success this season was due to the Lady Rebels’ exceptional hitting ability.
“Our hitting (was) definitely our biggest strength,” Waskiewicz said. “Many of the (team members) have the capability of really putting the ball down.”
Nath chimed in: “The strength of this year’s team was our hitting abilities, and our servers,” she said.
Ray Fisher is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-388-5820 or firstname.lastname@example.org.