By Matthew Aveni
A pair of Blue Devils volleyball players were honored this week for their play last weekend at the University of New Hampshire Invitational Volleyball tournament. Freshman Makenna Lommori and senior Jamie Rademacher were NEC rookie of the week and NEC player of the week, respectively.
Far apart in age, the two Blue Devils are both essential pieces to Centrals’ offense, Makenna being the setter and Jamie playing as a sliding middle attacker.
Being a senior, Jamie has to carry herself with team leadership both on and off the court. With the newly implemented 5-1 offense Jamie is one of the primary attackers with Makenna taking over as the primary setter.
“Jamie being the sliding middle is one of our primary hitters and we hope to get a lot kills with limited errors out of her position. Without Makenna being on her game Jamie can’t perform to the best she can,” said head coach Linda Sagnelli.
Makenna is a very special athlete with a great work ethic and an even better personality, Sagnelli said. Makenna’s setting ability as a freshman is beyond her years as she also took on best setter of the tournament at the Temple Invitational. She came out of high school as the Nevada Player of the Year both her junior and senior year.
“She (Makenna) has been working very hard; she plays a position where there is a lot of responsibility where she has to worry about what we are doing, but also what they are doing on the other side of the court. Makenna is one of the most coachable athletes I have ever coached and her work ethic is unquestionable,” said Sagnelli.
Without Makenna and Jamie playing at their best, the offense for the Blue Devils would squander in NEC games. With Makenna making good passes, Emily Cochran can lead the attack with few errors and many kills. The team as a whole works well together and with Makenna and Jamie playing as well as they did, the team will be hard to beat.
“When Makenna is on it makes our entire team just that much better. When she is making good passes Emily and Jamie can be the good hitters they are. They (Jamie and Makenna) are very versatile players, whether it is making blocks or keeping the ball alive with digs,” Sagnelli said.
It is a good feeling for a Central athlete to be recognized for the work they have put in, but the ultimate goal is an NEC championship according to Sagnelli.
“We make our players make individual goals and team goals, all the girls love individual acclimates but the true satisfaction is winning an NEC Championship,” Sagnelli said.
With NEC play starting this weekend the Blue Devils hope to continue to have the solid play from Both Lommori and Rademacher.