Can They Do It? CNY High School Chasing 6th Sectional Volleyball Title
If there's ever a local team to follow every winter, it's this group of girls in Central New York.
It's one thing to bring your team all the way to sectional finals almost every year, but how about doing it on an undefeated season? An unblemished record is on the horizon for the Mt. Markham Woman's Volleyball Team in West Winfield.
An Incredible Year
There were only two games during the regular season where the Mustangs lost a set during a match (Cooperstown, Sherburne-Earville). Otherwise, the team posted 15 perfect games, with 9 of those being in-a-row. This helped Mt. Markham build a commanding 16-0 record heading into Sectionals.
The girls came in hot, beating rival Sauquoit Valley in the Quarterfinal Round 3-0. Their biggest challenge came at home against Canastota in the Semifinals. The game went into 5 sets, with the girls snagging a close 2-point victory to advance onto the finals.
All About the Team
When looking at the stats, there's a reason these girls are on top. Sophomore Addison Jones leads the team in both Aces (73) and Assists (233), followed close behind by Junior Hailey Otis (67 Aces, 217 Assists) and Junior Paige Korosec (151 Kills, 67 Aces).
The seniors on the team have also showed their strengths. Abbie Ainslie is a team leader in Digs (148), along with Trinity Bailey who leads in Kills (161). Other key contributors include Senior Kayla Wellenstein, and Juniors Madison Jones, Trissa Palmer, and Kaitlyn Humphreville.
If you ask anyone, it's all about the team and nothing else. These girls play together as a close family, all lead by their fearlessly humble Coach Terry McKane.
Not only did McKane bring in his 5th straight undefeated season, but he's also playing for his 6th Sectional title. Last year his team went undefeated, until they reached the finals where they lost to Tully.
When asked what he took away from last season's sectional loss, he said it came down to several factors.
You gotta bring your A-game all the time... and I don't think we were prepared enough. Also coming out of [COVID-19 pandemic], this was the first time many of them had played on that stage. It's a lot to take in.
Even though last season fell short, Mt. Markham continues to perform strong every season. McKane has coached the Varsity girls since 2000, bringing them to a total of 9 Sectional title games. He says it's all about having the right people in place.
I'm blessed to have Chris Osborne on Modified and Josh Higby on Junior Varisty... The kids are ready when they get to Varsity, and then it's all fine tuning from there.
He's also extremely proud of the team's hard work. They all play extremely well together and come to each game ready to work as a team
If you want to cheer on the Mustangs for yourself, make a trip out this weekend. The girls will be taking on Beaver River on Saturday, February 18th at 10:00am in Watertown.
Coach McKane says though their game time is earlier than they're used to, the 10:00am start is a positive. He believes the girls can focus on playing their own game, and not be distracted by everyone else.
The team is grateful for all the support and hope you can make it out this Saturday. Tickets are available by following the link here.