Last Updated: November 16, 2015
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Class A2 Sectional Champions!

11/7/15                                                                Written by Bernie Allen

Sutherland is a Sectional Champion for the 4th year in a row!


The top seeded Knights took down the third seeded Barons from Brighton in 3 games, 25-8, 25-8 and 25-15, at Webster Schroeder to claim the title.  The score was tied 4-4 in the opening game until Sarah Blowers lit up the offense with her big swings and hot serving.  She ended with 13 kills, 4 aces and 12 digs for the match.  The other half of the “Killer B’s”, Savvy Bothner had 6 kills, 7 digs and an ace.  Andrea Green was outstanding contributing all around the court.  She had 10 kills from the middle position to go with 3 aces, 4 digs and a block.  Leah Sherman returned to action and added 2 kills.  Hope Shuman also had 2 kills.  Andrea Allen quarterbacked the offense to perfection with 31 assists, 8 digs and 4 kills.  Libero Aliah Bowllan led the defense with 10 digs and 4 aces.  Giuliana Johnson also had 8 digs for the Knights.


In post-match festivities, first year coach, Jon Eckler was honored as the Class A2 Coach of the Year.  Aliah Bowllan and Sarah Blowers were named to the All-Tournament team for their outstanding play and Andrea Allen was named the tournament MVP.


The Knights made it to the championship match with convincing wins over Pittsford Mendon in the quarter finals and over Canandaigua in the semi finals.  They beat Mendon 25-9, 25-8 and 25-10.  Defense was the key to this match.  Bowllan, Allen and Bothner had 12, 11, and 10 digs, respectively.  The middle tandem of Green and Shuman added 10 kills and a block.  The rest of the offense was provided by Bothner with 8 kills, Blowers 5 kills, Allen 5 kills, Sherman 5 kills and Kieran Nanavati with 1 kill.  Allen also had 24 assists.


The Braves fell in the semis 25-17, 25-11 and 25-8.  The Killer B’s came up big combining for 21 kills, 14 digs and 6 aces.  Green and Shuman teamed up for 6 kills and 1 block and Nanavati added 4 kills and 2 blocks.  Bowllan played her typical game, tremendous defense, with 14 digs to go with 6 assists and 2 aces.  Allen had another consistent match contributing 22 assists, 11 digs, 2 kills and 7 aces.


The Knights will face the Victor Blue Devils and past coach Matt Glover in a Class A crossover match on Tuesday at Webster Thomas.  The winner will travel to Buffalo to play the Section 6 Class A champion on November 14th.


Aliah Bowllan Named Under Armour 1st Team All-American

The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced their High School All-America lists today and senior, Aliah Bowllan has been named to the first-team. Bowllan is the third Sutherland player to earn this recognition in as many years and joins fellow stand outs and former teammates Santita Ebangwese (2014-15) and Luisa Schirmer (2013-14) in earning this honor.

Bowllan is one of 24 athletes from across the country to be named to the first-team and the only player from New York on the list. She will travel to Nebraska to participate in the Under Armour All-America match on Friday, December 18 in conjunction with the AVCA Annual Convention and NCAA Women's Volleyball Final Four.

Congratulations Aliah!
  Your Sutherland volleyball family is very proud of you!!



JV Team Finishes Great Season 

11/1/15                                                               Written by Bernie Allen


The Sutherland JV girls’ volleyball ended their season the other night with a win over Webster Schroeder on the road.  The team won the first game 25-14 but the Warriors came back to win the second game 25-16 to force a game three tie-breaker.  The Knights utilized strong serving and stingy defense to win the third game 25-19.

Coach Lynne Allen is extremely proud of her team’s accomplishments.  “The team finished 15-1 and that did not come with its challenges.  After the first four matches, the varsity called up three of our starters.  This team stepped up with new leadership and continued to maintain an efficient offense, one to be proud of!”

The team used strong serving, stingy defense and ball control to be successful this season.  They had 342 services aces including 55 from Hannah Catello-Stooks, 51 by Lindsey Michaud, 46 from Ronnie Hollenberg and Gi Julian with 38.  The team had a serving percentage of 83.7%.  Catello-Stooks also led the defense with 157 of the team’s 483 digs.  Setter Sidra Morchower ran the ball control offense distributing 198 assists.  Melissa Nixon led the team in kills with 64.  Sophie Shemirani had 43 and Cami Eder added 30 kills.

“The sophomores on this team will be great additions to the varsity next year”, Allen said.  “The varsity will graduate seven from this year’s team which brings opportunities for next season.”




An Unforgettable Senior Night

10/20/15                                                Written by Bernie Allen


The JV team set the tone and the varsity followed suit with two exciting wins over Penfield on Senior Night at Sutherland.

Coach Lynne Allen’s squad remained unbeaten as they took the final two games from the Patriots 25-23 and 25-23 after losing the first game 25-19.  Penfield sent an arsenal of shots over the net but the Knights turned them back with 63 digs including 24 from Hannah Catello-Stooks, who earned player of the game honors.  Sidra Morchower handed out 17 assists including 11 to Sophie Shemirani and Cami Eder who had 6 kills and 5 kills, respectively.  The team also had 10 aces including 4 from Ronnie Hollenberg.

The stage was set for the varsity showdown.  Prior to the start of the match, the seven seniors from Penfield were introduced and given flowers by a Sutherland player.  The Sutherland seniors and their parents were then introduced.  The players being honored were Melanie Marsh, Andrea Green, Leah Sherman, Hope Shuman, Sarah Blowers, Aliah Bowllan and Andrea Allen.

The 10-1 Patriots were firing on all cylinders and took the first game 25-18 but the never-say-die Knights fought back to win the next three games 25-20, 25-21 and 25-23 in front of a packed gymnasium.  Sarah Blowers and Savvy Bothner led the hitting attack with 30 kills.  Andrea Green added 5 kills and 2 blocks.  Kieran Nanavati had 5 kills and Hope Shuman notched 2 kills.  The defense was led by libero Aliah Bowllan who had 29 digs.  Andrea Allen also had 25 digs to go with her 40 assists.  Blowers and Bothner combined for 32 digs and Mary Bayer had a big night contributing 8 digs.

The Knights traveled to West Irondequoit to face the Eagles with the league championship on the line and came away with three-game victory, 25-14, 25-23 and 25-21.  The tandem of Blowers and Bothner accounted for 23 kills, 5 aces and 23 digs.  Andrea Green had 7 kills and 2 timely blocks.  Freshman Kieran Nanavati continues to improve as she added 6 kills.  Aliah Bowllan had another outstanding night with 28 digs and Andrea Allen had the offense running smoothly with her 34 assists and 20 digs. 

The team heads to Webster Schroeder to take on the Warriors on their senior night.  Sectional play begins next week.  The opponent is yet to be determined. 



HOSS Classic Champions


10/15/15                                                Written by Bernie Allen


The Sutherland Girls volleyball team got by Mercy last weekend in the finals to win the HOSS Classic at Sutherland by scores of 25-9 and 25-15.  Head coach Jon Eckler was impressed with his team’s performance in the tournament, “We played well offensively and defensively all day.  We are peaking at the right time”.  The team has three matches left in the season before sectionals begin.  They won their pool by beating Byron-Bergen in 2 games, Webster Thomas in 2 games, Fulton in 2 games and splitting with Mercy.  Sutherland won the pool because they had one more win than Mercy.  They faced Cazenovia in the quarter finals winning in 2 straight then beat league rival West Irondequoit in the semi-finals 25-12, 25-22 to get to the finals.  The Killer Bees, Sarah Blowers and Savannah Bothner had big games against Mercy combining for 17 kills.  The middle tandem of Andrea Green and Hope Shuman added 7 kills and 2 blocks. 


The Knights hosted Mendon last Tuesday winning in straight sets, 25-10, 25-7 and 27-25, after being down by 8 points earlier in the third game.   Freshman Kieran Nanavati had a big night with 2 aces and 6 kills and her sister, junior Erina Nanavati dished out 8 assists and had 1 kill. 


The team traveled to Canandaigua for a league match on Wednesday, coming away with a victory, 25-11, 25-7 and 25-14.  Sisters Andrea and Rachel Green combined for 2 aces, 9 kills and a block.  Sarah Blowers blistered the Braves with her swings accounting for 11 kills.  Junior Giuliana Johnson had 2 aces as part of her streak of serving ten points in a row.  Andrea Allen contributed 5 aces, 3 kills, 1 block, 13 digs and 22 assists and Aliah Bowllan added 3 aces, 5 assists and 17 digs.


Penfield visits Sutherland on senior night then the Knights end their season on the road at West Irondequoit and Webster Schroeder.  The team’s record is 7-0 League, 13-0 Match play and 34-3-1 Overall.


JV Results

The JV team continued their perfect season (13-0) with wins over Mercy, Canandaigua and Mendon.  Ronnie Hollenberg led the parade of aces as she contributed 8 of the team's 22 aces against Mercy.  Marina Perestam had 4 kills and Cami Eder, Lindsey Michaud, Melissa Nixon and Sophie Shemirani each had 3 kills.  Hannah Catello-Stooks had 11 digs for the Knights.


Against Canandaigua, Gi Julian, Catello-Stooks and Michaud each had 5 aces.  Setter Sidra Morchower handed out 12 assists and Taylor Pudetti added 5 assists.  Eder, Catello-Stooks, Jolie Neilson, Perestam, Nixon and Riley Lusk combined for 13 kills.




Knights Beat Mercy, Batavia and Olympia


10/4/15                                                Written by Bernie Allen


Mercy brought their high powered offense to Sutherland on Wednesday.  The Knights played outstanding defense and controlled the ball to come away with the victory, 31-33, 25-21, 25-21 and 25-22.  After dropping the first game, the never-say-never squad fought back to win the next three games.  Sarah Blowers had a huge night with 25 kills, 15 digs and 2 aces.  Savvy Bothner, Andrea Green and Leah Sherman added 26 kills.  Libero Aliah Bowllan was her usual stingy self returning hits like they were bad pennies.  She had 33 digs in the match.  Giuliana Johnson was a force to be dealt with kicking in with 2 aces and 13 digs.  Andrea Allen had the offense hitting on all cylinders handing out 43 assists to go with her 5 kills and 19 digs.


Aliah Bowllan digs ball against Mercy


The Knights hosted Batavia last Monday winning in straight sets, 25-11, 25-20 and 25-23.  Seniors Melanie Marsh, Leah Sherman, Andrea Green and Hope Shuman combined for 17 kills.  Sophomores Rachel Green and Kieran Nanavati made their presence known adding 3 kills each.  Giuliana Johnson came up big in the backcourt with 15 digs.  Erina Nanavati had 8 assists and Andrea Allen added 21 assists including the 4,000th one of her career.


Andrea Allen setting ball vs Batavia


On Friday, the team traveled to Greece Olympia to face the Spartans.  It was the Sherman and Shuman Show as Leah and Hope combined for 13 kills in the 3-game victory, 25-10, 25-12 and 25-12.  Melanie Marsh and Andrea Green kicked in with 7 kills.  Erina Nanavati took game 3 in hand serving 9 straight points.  The team was down 13-9 when she took over the serve and they were up 18-13 by the time she finished.  She also had 8 assists.


The team will travel to Mercy on Tuesday and go up against Canandaigua on Thursday before hosting their annual Pumpkin Bash tournament on Saturday.   The team’s record is 4-0 League, 9-0 Match play and 24-3 Overall.


JV Results

The JV team continued their perfect season (9-0) with wins over Batavia, Mercy and Olympia.  The amazing serving continued as they amassed 36 aces against Batavia led by Lindsey Michaud with 9 and Gi Julian with 8 aces.  Hannah Catello-Stooks, Melissa Nixon, Riley Lusk and Sidra Morchower had 3 aces each.  Taylor Prudetti and Jolie Neilson were named the players of the game for their hustle during the match.


Like the varsity, the squad won a close match with Mercy, 25-14, 28-26 and 25-19. The Lady Knights had used 15 aces, 24 kills, 7 blocks and 25 digs to beat the Monarchs.  Michaud had 3 aces.  Julian, Catello-Stooks, Katie Glance, Lusk and Prudetti each had 2 aces.  Melissa Nixon and Catello-Stooks had 5 kills each.  Nixon (3), Aneliese Brandt (2) and Morchower (2) combined for the 7 blocks.  Ronnie Hollenberg led the team with 7 digs.  Morchower, who had 18 assists, was named the player of the game.


Pinpoint serving helped them beat Olympia 25-15, 25-7 and 25-11.  Prudetti (8), Morchower (4) and Michaud (4) combined for 16 of team’s 29 aces.  Cami Eder (4), Lusk (4) and Sophie Shemirani (3) led the team in kills.  Players of the game were Eder and Lusk for their outstanding play.




Impressive Win against W. Irondequoit 

Finish 2nd in Baldwinsville Tournament


9/27/15                                                                 written by Bernie Allen


Sutherland took on league rival West Irondequoit in the Sutherland gym and came away with a 5-game victory by the scores of 17-25, 25-13, 22-25, 25-19 and 25-18.  “The team fought hard and overcame an outstanding effort by Irondequoit.” Coach Jon Eckler said after the match.  Senior Andrea Green brought the spark to the team in Game 5 with some clutch serving and back row defense.  In the match, Green recorded 9 kills, 2 aces and 4 digs.  There was plenty of offense as Sarah Blowers had 30 kills, Savvy Bothner added 15 kills, Leah Sherman 7 kills and Hope Shuman with 4 kills.  Setter Andrea Allen dished out 62 assists.  The defense was led by senior libero Aliah Bowllan who dug 34 balls.  The win kept the Knights record perfect in league play (3-0) and in match play (5-0).


The team had an equally impressive showing at the Baldwinsville tournament over the weekend finishing second after a hard fought loss to Burnt Hills 25-20 and 25-15.  They won their pool by beating City Honors (Buffalo) in 2 games, Corning-Painted Post in 2 games and splitting with Shenendehowa (Albany area) but winning on point differential.  There was plenty of offense featuring 4 kills by Melanie Marsh, 2 kills by Kieran Nanavati and Rachel Green’s first varsity kill.  They played a one-game position match against Baldwinsville on their home court.  Consistent passing and great defense got the win.  Bowllan, Blowers and Bothner had 22 digs in the win.  They met Victor in the semis and beat them in 2 straight games, 25-13 and 25-19.  Next was Connequot who traveled 7 hours up from Long Island.  The Knights turned them away 25-20 and 25-23.  Coach Eckler credited the win to excellent ball control.  The finals pitted Sutherland against Burnt Hills, our opponents in the last three state championship finals.  Burnt Hill used their height and fast paced offense to take the match in 2 games.


A road game against Brighton was the first varsity match for sophomores Sienna Provvidenza and Rachel Green and for freshman Kieran Nanavati.  The Knights handled the Barons 25-9, 25-10 and 25-14.  It marked the first of many more to come points from the Nanavati sisters.  Junior Erina set Kieran who go the kill in game 3 of the match.  The last sister assist-kill combination was the Shirmer sisters, Selina to Luisa.


The team finished tied for third in the Burnt Hills tournament last weekend.  They beat Oneonta, Owego, Delaware Valley and Kings Park before losing to tournament champion Penfield by the scores of 25-23 and 25-21.  The Knights faced Kings Park in the state playoffs last year.  They beat the Kingsmen 25-20 and 25-21 in the quarter finals.  Giuliana Johnson had 2 aces and 6 digs in the victory.  The Killer B’s, Blowers and Bothner, combined for 16 kills and 24 digs.  Bowllan added 13 digs and Allen had 24 assists.


The Knights posted victories over Mendon and Honeoye Falls-Lima earlier in the week.  Against HF-L, the team controlled the net and played scrappy defense.  The Middles tandem of Shuman, Green and Melanie Marsh collected 12 kills and 1 block while hitters Sherman, Blowers and Bothner amassed 27 kills.  The defense was led by Bowllan and Allen who combined for 31 digs.  Green had another big night against the Vikings with 8 kills and 3 blocks.  Mary Bayer had the hot hand as she served the first nine points in a row.  Junior Erina Nanavati was solid on the court and had 4 digs.


The team will host Batavia and Mercy before traveling to Greece Olympia next week.  The team’s record is now 4-0 League, 6-0 Match play and 21-3 Overall.


JV Results

The squad’s record remained perfect with wins against Honeoye Falls-Lima, West Irondequoit and Brighton.

HFL:  The team had 29 aces led by Riley Lusk and Sienna Provvidenza with 5 each.  The team had 25 kills including 5 by Rachel Green, 4 by Kieran Nanavati and 3 by Sienna Provvidenza.  Hannah Catello-Stooks had game high 7 aces to go with 5 digs.  Players of the game were Sidra Morchower who had 10 assists and Marina Perestam who had 2 aces and a kill.


Irondequoit:  The hot serving was led by Lindsey Michuad and Green with 4 aces each.  The offensive attack was anchored by Nanavati with 7 kills, Aneliese Brandt with 4 kills and Melissa Nixon with 3 kills.  The defense was supported by Nanavati’s 7 digs, Catello-Stooks with 5 digs and Ronnie Hollenberg and Green with 3 each.  Morchower dished out 14 assists.  Brandt was named the player of the game for her solid play.


Brighton:  It was another big day of serving led by Hollenberg with 6 aces, Michaud with 5 aces and Sophie Shemirani’s 4 aces.  Shemirani keyed the scoring with 7 kills along with Nixon’s 7 kills and Perestam’s 4 kills.  They stopped a lot of balls from hitting the court caused by Catello-Stooks’ 7 digs, Morchower’s 5 digs and Perestam’s 4 digs.  Morchower also had 21 assists.  Coach Lynne Allen named Giovanna Julian and Shemirani the players of the game.



  Knights Finish 3rd in Penfield Tourney, Beat Brighton and Mendon

9/13/15                                                                 written by Bernie Allen

The Sutherland girls’ volleyball team had a good showing at the Penfield tournament last weekend going 5-1 and finishing tied for third.  They went undefeated in pool play winning both games against Wilson (Buffalo), Aquinas and Fairport.  In the pre-quarters in the Gold bracket, they faced a scrappy Byron-Bergen team in a one-game match and came out on top 25-19. The Victor Blue Devils, coached by ex-Sutherland coach Matt Glover, were the opponent in the quarter-final match.  The Knights won the first game handily 25-15.  The second game went back and forth until senior middle Hope Shuman came up with a huge block to seal the win 26-24. Shuman was supported by fellow hitters Andrea Green, Leah Sherman, Sarah Blowers and Savvy Bothner who combined for 26 kills and 3 blocks.  Libero Aliah Bowllan had 9 digs and setter Andrea Allen added 25 assists.


They drew Penfield in the semi-finals match.  The Patriots, NYS Class AA runner-up in 2014, were hitting on all cylinders as the beat the Knights 25-20 and 25-14.  Penfield went on to win their tournament.  For Aliah Bowllan’s outstanding play, she was named to the all-tournament team.  Coach Jon Eckler said after the tournament, “The girls played well today.  We are improving with each match”.


Sutherland hosted Brighton on Tuesday and got back to their winning ways besting the Barons 25-8, 25-9 and 25-22. Andrea Allen used all her weapons in garnering 26 assists to go with 10 digs and 3 aces.  Sara Blowers led the charge with 12 kills, 15 digs and 2 aces.  Savvy Bothner had 7 kills and 8 digs.  Leah Sherman contributed 6 kills and 4 aces and Andrea Green added 5 kills and 2 blocks.


Friday saw the team travel across town for a match-up against the Mendon Vikings.  The team won in convincing fashion 25-12, 25-10 and 25-6.  It was a big night for Andrea Green who had 8 kills, 3 blocks, 4 digs and 1 ace.  She had plenty of support from Blowers with 10 kills and 2 aces, and from Bothner with 4 kills, 3 aces and 10 digs.  Sherman, Shuman and Allen had 2 kills each and Melanie Marsh added 1 kill.  Allen also had 24 assists.  Setter Erina Nanavati played well adding 1 ace and 2 assists.  Junior Mary Bayer got the scoring going in Game 3 serving the first 9 points.


The team hosts Honeoye Falls-Lima on Wednesday before heading to the Burnt Hills tournament next weekend.


JV Results

The JV team continued on their winning ways beating Brighton 25-6, 25-10 and 17-25.  They put on another good showing against Mendon beating the Vikings 25-11, 25-19 and 25-21.


The Knights used a balanced scoring attack against Brighton as nine players had kills; Cami Eder and Kieran Nanavati with 3 each, Marina Perestam and Sophie Shemirani with 2 each, and Lindsey Michaud, Melissa Nixon, Rachel Green, Sienna Provvidenza and Taylor Pudetti each had 1 kill.  The team scored 21 points off service aces led by Hanna-Catello-Stooks with 10.  Gi Julian added 3, Ronnie Hollenberg and Green had 2 each and Sidra Morchower, Nanavati, Michaud and Shemirani contributed 1 each.  Hollenberg and Nanavati were named the players of the game by Coach Lynne Allen.


Against Mendon, Provvidenza had a great day with 6 aces, 3 kills, 7 assists and 5 digs.  Sutherland used pinpoint serving.  Catello-Stooks , Michaud and Pudetti each had 3 aces, Riley Lusk and Green added 2 each, and Nanavati and Perestam had 1 ace.  They also had 25 kills: Green (6), Nixon (5), Nanavati (4), Provvidenza (3), Aneliese Brandt (2), Perestam (2), Jolie Neilson (1), Lusk (1) and Eder (1).  Provvidenza and Nixon were the players of the game.


9/1/15                      A New Season, A New Coach and an Experienced Team                                                           written by Bernie Allen

This is the start to a season that the players hope will end just like last year.  The 2014 season ended on a high note as they beat Burnt Hills 28-26 in the final game of a 5-game match to capture the Class A State Title for the second year in a row.  Gone are Santita Ebangwese (Syracuse), Taylor Kells (Niagara) and Jes Marini (Brockport) but there Is plenty of experience remaining on this year’s team.   Senior co-captains Andrea Allen, Aliah Bowllan and Sarah Blowers return along with fellow seniors Hope Shuman, Leah Sherman, Andrea Green and Melanie Marsh.  They are joined by the veteran junior Savannah Bothner and Mary Bayer, Giuliana Johnson and Erina Nanavati. 

Allen, a fifth year setter, had this to say, “Many of the girls have been on the team for a while and know what it’s like to play in pressure situations.  Sutherland volleyball should not be underestimated this year.”  Aliah Bowlan, the NY State Libero of the Year for the past two seasons, stated “We have a different team this year.  We are not the biggest team in Section V but we play with a lot of heart and a lot of passion.  Things are different but sometimes different is good.”  Sarah Blowers, first team all-county last year, said “I can’t wait to see how far we can go this year.  These girls mean the world to me and I am honored to be part of such a great program.” 

There will also be a new coach leading the Knights this year.  Jon Eckler moved over from Pittsford Mendon to replace Matt Glover who took the head coaching position at Victor.  Coach Eckler said “I’m excited for this season because I have a lot of players who know how to win.”  He will be assisted by Lynne Allen who begins her 6th season at Sutherland (114-8-3 record), modified coach Chris Swyers, and new assistants Matt Catanzaro and Kay Pfleghardt.

The team opened their season at Gates Chili and came away with a 4-game victory, 18-25, 25-23, 25-21 and 25-13.  They dropped the first game as they were settling into their offense.  They were down 20-16 in the second game but the ‘never say die’ Knights clawed their way back to win 25-23 and they kept the momentum going in the 3rd game.  In Game 4, they were hitting on all cylinders, moving the ball around quickly and finding the open spots on the court to score.  The front court was led by Leah Sherman, Sarah Blowers and Savvy Bothner who each had 8 kills.  Hope Shuman chipped in with 5 kills and Andrea Green had 4 kills to go with 3 blocks.  The back court was led by Aliah Bowllan with 17 digs.  Giuliana Johnson added 11 digs and 3 aces.  Mary Bayer contributed 3 digs to go with 2 aces.  Andrea Allen was solid with 32 assists and 15 digs.

Sutherland will play another challenging schedule this year including league rivals West Irondequoit, Brighton, Mendon, Canandaigua, and Mercy, Webster Schroeder, Honeoye Falls-Lima and tournaments in Penfield, Burnt Hills and Baldwinsville.


JV Results

The JV Lady Knights started their season on a high note against the Gates-Chili squad.  They combined a balanced offensive attack with solid defense to win 25-17, 25-17, 25-8.  Hannah Catello-Stooks had 6 aces and 9 digs.  Setter Sidra Morchower had 9 assists and 1 dig.  There was big production out of the front court as Katie Glance, Kieran Nanavati, Rachel Green, Sophie Shemirani, Riley Lusk and Jolie Nelson combined for 16 kills.  Lindsey Michaud chipped in with 5 aces. 


For their efforts, Catello-Stooks and Michaud earned Player of the Game honors.



2014 State Champions

Sutherland Knights




      Knights Repeat as State Champions

In a weekend where every member played with grit and determination, the Sutherland girls’ volleyball team captured the New York State title for the second year in a row.  Coach Matt Glover summed up the season and the championship weekend in one word, “Relentless.  Volleyball is a team sport and these girls were relentless about playing as a team.  Everyone stepped up!”  The Knights claimed the title with a nail-biting victory over familiar powerhouse Burnt Hills in five games, 16-25, 27-25, 25-14, 21-25 and 28-26.


The tournament began with all teams marching into the Glens Falls Civic Center to the Olympic Fanfare and Theme music.  The three teams vying for the Class A title in addition to Sutherland were John Jay (Section 1), Burnt Hills (2) and Kings Park (11).  Each team’s Sportsmanship Award winner was announced during the opening ceremony.  Senior Jes Marini was the Knights’ winner.  This was the start of an unforgettable day for Jes.   The team handled John Jay in the first pool play match, 25-13 and 25-21.  Their next opponent was Burnt Hills.  In the first game with the Knights up 21-20, junior setter Andrea Allen twisted her ankle and had to leave the game.  Sophomore Erina Nanavati, who was the JV setter this year, came off the bench to replace Allen and help lead the team to a 25-22 victory.  Fellow sophomore JV Giuliana Johnson also entered the game and delivered some clutch serves for the Knights.  In game two against Burnt Hills, Marini took over the setting duties and ran the offense like an old pro resulting in a 25-19 victory and guaranteeing a spot in the Championship match.  Coach Glover relied on his reserves against Kings Park and they did not disappoint earning a split 24-26 and 25-20.  Mary Bayer, Melanie Marsh, Andrea Green and Hope Shuman played outstanding which helped Sutherland to a 5-1 record in pool play. 

Marini was again called upon to perform the setting duties for the first game of the best-of-five championship against Burnt Hills with Allen still hobbled.  They ran into a wall as the Spartans let no balls hit the ground and lost 25-16.  Allen took over as the setter in game two and although she wasn’t at 100 percent, she led the Knights to victories in games two and three.  Burnt Hills battled back in game four to set up a fifth and final game.  The team moved out to a 23-18 lead but the game was tied at 24. The Knights had their back against the wall twice as Burnt Hills was within one point of the win.  They persevered and took the lead 27-26 then Allen set the ball to senior Taylor Kells who slammed the ball to the floor for the final point and a 28-26 victory.  The team stormed the court and the celebration was on…for the second year in a row!

For their play, Ebangwese and Allen were named to the All-Tournament team and Bowllan was named the Most Valuable Player.