‘Pretty Lady’ Saints look back

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 18, 2003

To sum up her feelings about the 2002-03 girls’ volleyball season, Nansemond-Suffolk Academy (NSA) senior Nicole Edwards used the art of rhyming words. &uot;Ten young smiles filled with a new season full of laughter, hearts and attitudes beyond reason with high expectations and big shoes to fill, we battled our opponents with intent to kill,&uot; she read at the season banquet at NSA on Tuesday evening.

Of course, Edwards wasn’t using kill in the literal sense; in volleyball terms, the word kill describes a spike, a team’s most prevalent scoring weapon.

&uot;Though wins weren’t always the result of our games,&uot; she continued (the varsity team finished 3-6 in the TCIS), &uot;Our perfect smiles and pretty bows won us the fame.&uot; The team had a habit of wearing blue bows; the smiles are self-explanatory.

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&uot;We are winners. Though in the conference, that’s not what it seems, no matter what, we’re the prettiest team!&uot;

The three Lady Saint volleyball teams – varsity, junior varsity, and Junior junior varsity (JJV) – said goodbye to the 2002-3 season on Tuesday night. JJV coach Stella Paradise started the evening, looking back on a team in its second year of existence.

&uot;This was a very interesting year,&uot; Paradise said. &uot;We learned a lot, grew a lot, and had a lot of fun.

&uot;It’s very hard to pick a Most Valuable Player, because so many players are new to the game. But I commend one for the leadership she showed. She was the one who could always boost our spirits when we were down.&uot; Paradise was referring to Morgan Thorndyke.

For the junior varsity, Ellen Giermak, who had the most aces (25 percent of her serves went unreturned) and tied for second in blocks, was named the Offensive player of the year, while Leigh Pfeil, who had the most digs, got the Defensive honor. Sarah Bangley, who &uot;excelled in almost every area,&uot; according to coach Bill San-ford, received the Coach’s award. The junior varsity team was the most successful group of Lady Saints, finishing the season at 9-6.

&uot;One thing that you always try to do is build on the success of last year,&uot; said varsity coach Shane Foster, &uot;and I think we did that very well. There’s a lot of emphasis on the win-loss record, which wasn’t very successful for us. But one of the greatest compliments a coach can receive is when an opposing coach comes up to you and compliments him on his team. In the TCIS tournament, the second-ranked coach came up to me and said, ‘Your team may be seeded eighth, but they play like they should be ranked a lot higher!’&uot;

Senior Ashley Hill was named the Offensive player of the year, while Claire Leonard got the Defensive award. Ashley Winslow (the team’s only other senior) walked off with the Most Valuable Player and Coach’s awards.