SPORTS

Pat-Med volleyball loses to Commack in county championship

Gary Haber
Posted 11/9/23

The playoff run for the Patchogue-Medford girls varsity volleyball team ended last week in the Suffolk County Class AAA championship game, where the No. 3 seed Raiders lost to No. 1 seed Commack.

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SPORTS

Pat-Med volleyball loses to Commack in county championship

Posted

The playoff run for the Patchogue-Medford girls varsity volleyball team ended last week in the Suffolk County Class AAA championship game, where the No. 3 seed Raiders lost to No. 1 seed Commack.

Commack, the defending county champions, won in straight sets, 25-17, 25-22 and 25-14, in a neutral-site game played at Walt Whitman High School on Nov. 2.

The loss ended a terrific season for Pat-Med, which went 15-4 under first-year coach Alexandra Kennedy and upset No. 2 seed Ward Melville in the semifinals to reach the finals for the first time since 2021.

Kennedy said making a deep playoff run was her goal, after she saw the level of talent on the Raiders and how committed the team was to getting back to the championship game, especially among players who’d played in the 2021 championship game and wanted a return trip to the finals.

“We set the bar high,” Kennedy said. “Now, let’s go out and achieve it. I always saw this group as at least getting to counties, and we’re happy we were able to do so.”

Kennedy credited senior captains, Sophia DiPrima-Ginas and Isabella Salducco, with being the team leaders and bringing the players together, many of whom have played together since middle school.

“They really helped mold the team into a very close unit,” Kennedy said.

Salducco’s position was switched from outside hitter to libero midway through the season because of her excellent defensive skills, Kennedy said.

The Raiders have a lot to look forward to next season, with 10 of the 17 players on this year’s squad being sophomores or juniors who will be back next season.

They include outside hitter Chelsea D’Esposito, middle blocker Hayley Mantione, and setter  Maddie Mulderig, a sophomore playing her first year on varsity.

“I feel lucky as a coach; she’s a sophomore and I get her for two more years,” Kennedy said.