Senior captains working to bring Lady Bucs’ volleyball team closer together

MILFORD – Senior captain Nadia Delva may have summed it up best.

“Either we win, or we learn. We never lose.”

Her fellow senior captains, Grace Sekscinski and Celia Reinhardt, agreed that it’s the main focus of this year’s senior-laden squad.

Coming off a 2-13 campaign in 2017, the Lady Bucs are looking for game-by-game improvement and a higher team morale throughout the season, which is set to begin Monday, Sept. 10 at home against Sussex Tech.

Senior captains Celia Reinhardt, Nadia Delva and Grace Sekscinski (The Chronicle/Ben Heck).

“I think a lot of our team is working towards not really winning every single game but working really hard in those games, trying our best and improving each game,” said Sekscinski. “Of course, we want to win, but the goal is to improve each game.”

“I’m very happy with the group that we have,” said first-year head coach Heather Motter. “They all seem to be picking each other up. During scrimmages they all helped each other and had good chemistry overall.”

Of the nine girls listed on the roster, five of them are entering their senior season. The remaining four consists of three sophomores and a freshman.

Makenna Hajek, and Taylor Wessel make up the remainder of the senior class, with sophomores McKayla Ryan, Claire Smith and Juliana Diaz and freshman Kayla Jefferson rounding out the varsity roster of nine.

After feeling intimidated playing on varsity when they were underclassmen, Delva, Sekscinski and Reinhardt wanted to be sure the younger girls felt as welcome as possible.

“We’ve been saying that since freshman year,” Sekscinski said, with a laugh. “Our goal is definitely to include everyone and make it a team environment.”

“This is a very different chemistry than what we saw last year. We’re all very happy with it,” coach Motter said.

The girls proved just how committed they are to improving team chemistry this year by bonding over a team dinner last week.

“Last Thursday we did a team bonding at a player’s house, her mom said could have the whole team come over and had a spaghetti dinner,” said coach Motter. “The new volleyball movie The Miracle Season, we rented that for the girls, ate dinner and watched the movie together.

“On Tuesday when we came back (to practice) we talked about the movie and we talked about how we can learn from those experiences from the movie. From that, we got a lot of positive feedback. They had a great time.”

Lauren Rieley, who served as head coach last year, will be assisting coach Motter along with volunteer coach Pat Darlin.

Milford’s season-opener is set for the night of Monday, Sept. 10 at 5:30 p.m. inside the Milford Central Academy gymnasium.

“It’s going to be a tough game,” Reinhardt said. “We played them in a scrimmage and they are good, but since school started we’ve really been pushing ourselves to get ready. We really need to work hard these next few days.”

Sports Editor Ben Heck can be reached at bheck@newszap.com.

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