Yorktown Face Sailors after Two Wins

Yorktown’s Kristen Papitto follows through on a spike. Credits: Deena Bell

YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, N.Y.— Yorktown’s volleyball squad will host Hendrick Hudson at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13 in a highly anticipated and potential Section 1 Class A playoff preview.

“I’m really excited to play Hen Hud because I know it will be a challenge,” Yorktown senior captain Nicole Ruffino said. “We’re going to have to work hard and stay focused because they’ve been a good team with an excellent record of making it to regionals and states in previous years. We are definitely not taking this game lightly and are excited to play an intense match. The key to defeating Hen Hud would definitely be communication on the court.”

The Huskers earned a 3-0 (25-11, 25-15, 25-8) win against visiting Port Chester on Oct. 6, led by Toni Fiore (12 kills), Kayla Knoesel (8 kills, 2 aces) and Macey Drezek (15 assists, 3 aces).

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“What really helped us sweep Port Chester was our goal of not just defeating the other team, but to see if we could improve our game,” Ruffino said. “We went into this game focused solely on working hard to improve certain plays and runs. We have a good record this season, but we aren’t just leaving it at that. We’re always pushing harder to grow stronger in different areas of the game and this was definitely a game to do that.”

Ruffino added that she thought the play of Grace Meara (4 aces, 3 kills) stood out because she’s skilled at putting the ball away and being a team player.

“She’s always looking out for everyone on the court and her communication with the backline helps tremendously,” Ruffino said. “She’s a great leader and her numerous kills were definitely the highlight of the match.”

A day earlier, Yorktown won at rival Mahopac 3-0 (25-15, 25-13, 25-21).

“Every time we get a win it’s a great feeling, especially against one of our school rivals,” Yorktown senior captain Michelle Seger said.

Knoesel (9 kills), Fiore (9 kills, 6 aces, 2 blocks), Drezek (30 assists) and Seger (23 digs) propelled Yorktown to the win.

Seger said she was focused and driven to keep Yorktown (11-1, 5-0) on a winning path.

“We played as a team, communicated well and had lots of people contribute to the win,” Seger said. “We had a very good practice yesterday which absolutely had an impact on our play today.”

Lakeland won 3-0 (25-6, 25-11, 25-19) against Roosevelt (Early College) on Oct. 5.

The Hornets were ignited by the play of Devyn Clifford (10 digs), Haley Potvin-Sanjurjo (7 aces), Nikki Pemberton (5 kills) and Emily Kubicsko (10 assists).

“We simply were the stronger team,” said Clifford, a senior captain. “We came out ready to play and that’s exactly what we did. We were able to go on long runs and continue serving ace after ace.”

Clifford credited Potvin-Sanjurjo as being a huge contributor to the victory.

“She had multiple aces and was able to serve the ball strong and in play consecutively,” Clifford said.

Lakeland (5-6) finished the week with a 3-0 (25-12, 25-18, 25-19) setback at Somers on Oct. 6, led by Clifford (22 digs), Pemberton (8 kills) and Kubicsko (14 assists).

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