Volleyball: Pioneers spike an impressive third place at Romulus Invitational


The Pioneer volleyball team spent the weekend competing at the annual Romulus Invitational where the purple and white finished in third place.

“We played strong and powerful volleyball with some great team work,” said Coach Fabiana Martins. “It was a great tournament and our fans cheers and support was greatly appreciated.”

Pioneer defeated Lincoln (25-22, 25-22) and Annapolis (25-14, 25-9) before splitting with Livonia Franklin (23-25, 25-21) in pool play. Pioneer then lost in three sets to Franklin (25-13, 18-25, 9-15).

Pioneer had great performance by libero Elena Chagnovich with 70 defensives plays and only seven errors. Defensive specialist Lis Cordeiro had 22 defensive plays and just three errors. Defensives specialists Hannah Bondy and Sarah Lewis also delivered great passes.

“The precise performance of our four defensive players can be seen by our offensive plays,” Martins said.

Attackers Jesi Izirein had 57 attacks with 26 kills and Nicole Huge had 22 attacks with 14 kills. Zuri Howard and Maya Todd both had 28 attacks and nine kills. Freya Benson had 28 attacks and five kills and Gabby DeMott had 21 attacks and six kills.

Those kills were delivered by setter Lanie DeSano-Smith with 41 assists besides her amazing serves and six aces.

Sadie Freisthler was brilliant with her 16 accurate serves and three aces with no errors.

On Thursday, Pioneer lost in two and a half hour five-set marathon with Pinckney: 25-22, 14-25, 25-12, 22-25 and 9-15.

Great performances for Pioneer came from libero Elena Chagnovich with 48 defensive plays and only two serve received errors; and defensive specialists Hannah Bond, Lis Cordeiro and Sarah Lewis, who worked very hard and executed plenty of perfect passes and digs.

Attackers Nicole Huge had 18 attacks with 10 kills; Jesi Izirein with 15 attacks and seven kills; Gabby De-Mott with 13 attacks and two kills; Maya Todd with nine attacks and two kills and Freya Benson with 15 attacks and three kills. The kills were made possible because of the play of Delane De-Sanno Smith.

All 12 varsity players played in the match.




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