Division III Girls Volleyball All-Scholastic Team
The Republican Sports Desk, January 11, 2009 6:43 a.m.
DIVISION III FIRST TEAM
FRANCENE CICIA, Frontier - Senior setter was named to her second straight Division III All-State team;
three-year starter was a member of four straight Western Massachusetts Division III champions; formed
superb setting tandem with Amanda Koldy; class and NHS president; maximum honors; member of band
and wind ensemble; hopes to major in math and play college volleyball.
SAMANTHA CLAIREMONT, Frontier - Senior middle hitter was one of three Red Hawks named to
Division III All-State team; recorded 178 kills and 66 aces; repeat first-teamer; won three league and
sectional titles in three-year varsity career; Bay State Games and Western Mass. Junior Olympic Elite 18
member; NHS and Community Service Club.
KATIE DANIELS, South Hadley - Sophomore transferred from Arizona, along with twin sister Tori, and helped spark the Tigers to
a 17-3 record and the No. 4 seed in the Western Massachusetts Division III tournament; had 12 kills and eight assists in semifinal
loss to eventual champion Frontier Regional; posted 17 kills and 33 digs in non-league win over Ludlow.
JENNA DESCHAINE, Pioneer Valley Christian - Senior setter earned her third selection to the first team in four years; helped the
Eagles tie with Easthampton atop the Southern A Division; had 15 kills, six aces and four assists in defeating Easthampton in
preliminary round of Western Massachusetts Division III tournament; closed regular season with eight kills, eight assists and four
aces in non-league win over Mohawk Trail.
JODI HALLETT, Turners Falls - Senior setter is a repeat first-team selection; helped Indians to the championship match of the
Division III tournament, where she had 15 digs and 11 assists; posted 16 assists, 10 digs, 4 aces in semifinal victory over Lee;
member of Western Mass. Junior Olympic program; also plays varsity softball.
AMANDA KOLDY, Frontier - Senior formed an excellent combination with Francene Cicia in Frontier's
two-setter offense; member of three Western Massachusetts Division III championship teams and two
state finalists; NHS and Community Service Club; hopes to major in communications-journalism.
ANGELA MARGUET, Turners Falls - Senior outside hitter was one of several key contributors for the Division III sectional runners-
up; recorded 10 kills, 13 digs, 2 aces in semifinal win over Lee; repeat first-team choice; had 14 digs and 10 kills in victory over
Franklin Tech; member of Western Mass. Junior Olympic program; also plays varsity softball.
ASHLEY PODLESNY, Franklin Tech - Senior hitter played a vital role in the Eagles reaching the Western Massachusetts Division
III tournament and winning the four-team State Small School Vocational Tournament; had six kills, two blocks and seven digs in
state voke final win over Norfolk Aggie.
ALYSSA STANKOWSKI, Frontier - Senior outside hitter went 112-8 and had nearly 1,000 kills and over
1,500 digs in her five-year varsity career; three-time Division III All-State pick; played on four Western
Mass. champions and won five league titles; had 210 kills, 76 aces and 244 digs; 12 kills in 100th career
win against Pioneer; high honors and NHS; hopes to study marketing and play volleyball.
CASSIDY STANKOWSKI, Frontier - Outside hitter had 182 kills, 103 aces and 198 digs – and she's
only an eighth-grader; second-team All-Scholastic last season; sister of fellow first-teamer Alyssa
Stankowski; had 22 service points, five aces and six kills in win over eventual state champion Millis;
member of Western Mass. Junior Olympic Elite 16 team; maximum honors.
Republican All-Academic Sports Team Fall 2008
Francene Cicia, Frontier
Academic: Smith College Book Award; Tri-M Music Honor Society; in 23 High School Classes, has recorded 15 A+ marks and eight A's
Athletic: Volleyball; Western Massachusetts Champion; All-Scholastic First Team pick
Extra-curricular: Community Service Club; "As Schools Match Wits"
Community Service: Pennies for Peace; Destination Imagination, volunteer
College Plans: Plans to major in math.
Gazette All-Stars: Reaching the finish
Girls Volleyball All-Stars
By THE DAILY HAMPSHIRE GAZETTE
Alyssa Stankowski #13 in Red Francene Cicia Samantha Clairemont
ALYSSA STANKOWSKI (Frontier Regional) - The senior tricaptain was named to the Division 3 all-state team for the third year in a
row. ... Outside hitter tallied 210 kills, 76 aces, 244 digs and led the Red Hawks to their fourth straight Western Massachusetts Division 3
championship and a berth in the state tournament. ... Compiled more than 1,500 digs in her career, including five years as a starter. ...
Chosen a Northern League all-star four times.
FRANNY CICIA (Frontier Regional) - The senior tricaptain was named to the Division 3 all-state team for the second consecutive year.
... Registered 339 assists and 59 aces from the setter position, helping the Red Hawks win their fourth straight Western Massachusetts
Division 3 championship. ... Two-time Northern League all-star.
SAMANTHA CLAIREMONT (Frontier Regional) - The senior tricaptain was named to the Division 3 all-state team. ... Tallied 178 kills
and 66 aces, helping the Red Hawks win their fourth straight Western Massachusetts Division 3 championship. ...
Two-time Northern League all-star.
ALLYSON RANNIKKO (Easthampton) - The senior averaged 3.25 kills, 1.25 blocks and one dig in every set for the Eagles. ... Had the fewest
service errors on her team. ... Made teams modify their play in an attempt to stop her. ... Led Easthampton to an 11-8 record and a playoff
HEATHER MEARS (Amherst Regional) - The senior setter led her team with 442 assists. ... Also had 43 kills and 105 digs. ... A cocaptain and
on-the-court leader with her sister Jenn for the Hurricanes who finished 16-4 record and advanced to the Western Massachusetts Division 2
JENN MEARS (Amherst Regional) - The senior outside hitter led the Hurricanes in kills (172), digs (281) and aces (71) ... A cocaptain with her
sister Heather and fiery and emotional leader on the court for the Hurricanes who finished 16-4 record and advanced to the Western
Massachusetts Division 2 semifinals.
KATIE & TORI DANIELS (South Hadley) - The sophomore sisters transferred from Tucson, Ariz., and led the Tigers to their best record in
program history at 17-3 ... Helped team reach the Western Massachusetts Division 3 tournament semifinals for the first time ... In 3-0
quarterfinal victory over Belchertown, Katie had team-high 15 kills with Tori (32 assists) setting her up for many of them ... Tori also led team
with 11 aces ... In 3-0 semifinal loss to Frontier Regional, Katie had 12 kills, nine digs and eight assists, and Tori added 14 assists and eight
Laura Caraker, senior, Amherst Regional
Caulien Cockley, sophomore, South Hadley
Caitlynn Greenleaf, senior, Belchertown
Ashley McClaflin, senior, Easthampton
Cassidy Stankowski, 8th grader, Frontier Regional
Stankowski, Cicia, Clairemont all-state
Frontier Regional School's postseason accolades continue.
Three Red Hawk volleyball players, Alyssa Stankowski, Francene Cicia and Samantha Clairemont, were all selected to the Massachusetts
Girls Volleyball Coaches' Association Division III All-State team. All three players were also selected to the Northern Division's all-league team,
along with eighth-grade phenom Cassidy Stankowski.
This is the most players Frontier has ever placed on the All State volleyball team.
Alyssa Stankowski - whose five-year record as a member of the team was 112-8 - is a three-time All-State selection, Cicia was picked for the
second time in her career, and it is Clairemont's first honor.
"I think it shows how far we've come - despite the loss in the state semifinal - that our players comprise 25 percent of the Division III All-State
team despite 90 D-III teams in the state" said Red Hawks head coach Sean MacDonald.
Only one other player from western Massachusetts was picked for the D-II team, Jessie Schnepp from East Longmeadow High School.
Athlete of the Week: Cassidy Stankowski
by The Republican Sports Desk
Monday November 17, 2008, 8:05 PM
CASSIDY STANKOWSKI, Frontier volleyball
Position: Outside hitter
Stankowski came into her own this season, making the transition from libero as a seventh-grader
to outside hitter look easy; served 11 aces in Red Hawks' Western Massachusetts semifinal win
over South Hadley; had nine kills to top Turners Falls in the final.
Athletes: Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh (beach volleyball stars)
Music: Rock, hip-hop
Superstition: Gets her hair braided before matches and always wears
high white socks on the court.
Of note: Stankowski, 13, looks to follow the footsteps of her older sister, Alyssa, who was recently
named to the Division III All-State team for the third consecutive season.
On using her youth to her advantage: "I think they look at me as a little girl, and then I go on the court and show them what I can do."
On Frontier not making its fourth straight state final: "I would have really liked to send all our seniors out with a state championship, but
it was a good year. I know it didn't end the way we wanted it to."
Frontier knocked out, 3-1
MARK DURANT Recorder Staff
[ Originally published on: Friday, November 14, 2008 ]
SUDBURY -- It wasn't the ending they wanted -- not by any stretch.
Frontier Regional School struggled with errors after a thrilling Game 1 and succumbed to a deep and talented North Reading High School
squad, 27-29, 25-19, 25-19, 26-24, in the semifinals of the MIAA State Division III Volleyball Tournament Thursday night at Lincoln-Sudbury
Regional High School.
The 23-1 Hornets advance to face Millis High School, a 25-22, 17-25, 25-22, 25-16 winner over Ursuline Academy in Thursday's other
The Red Hawks (21-1) rode a six-point service run from Franny Cicia -- one of nine seniors -- to turn a 10-6 deficit into a 12-10 lead. North
Reading fought back to take a 17-16 lead.
Once Amanda Koldy served Frontier to a 21-17 lead, the Hornets never led again. Koldy finally put it away with an ace.
Frontier led 15-12 in Game 2 before Adrianna Doyle took the service line and rattled off nine straight points for the Hornets.
Kirstan Morrison and Liz Sutera's net play helped North Reading keep its lead, and two Frontier net errors closed out the game and pulled the
Hornets even at a game apiece.
Nine lead changed highlighted Game 3, but Nicole Cecchini served NR back into the lead, 19-16, with three points. It was lead the Hornets
would not relinquish.
The Red Hawks could only get a close as 20-18 before Morrison served for three points, and two more Frontier errors gave the Hornets a 2-1
North Reading led most of the final game until Alyssa Stankowski served for six points, including an ace, to put Frontier in front 24-22.
Unfazed, the Hornets' Taylor Dyer served for the final three points to put the Hornets into their third straight state final.
''A few too many errors, but they outplayed us,'' said Hawks head coach Sean MacDonald. Their libero (Cecchini) was awesome. We struggled
at times with hitting and serving, but North Reading deserved to win that one.''
Alyssa Stankowski finished with 12 kills, Sam Clairemont had 11 and Cassidy Stankowski chipped in six for the Hawks. Cicia registered 20
assists and Koldy added 11.
Notes: The match started 50 minutes late because the North Reading bus was stuck in a traffic jam on Route 128 while waiting for an accident
to be cleared. ... Hornets head coach Keri Forrest played on the 1993 North Reading squad that beat Frontier in the state semifinals in four
games. ... In their four meetings, only two of the 18 games have been decided by more than six points
Frontier Regional volleyball team ends historic run with loss in state Div. III
by The Republican Sports Desk
Thursday November 13, 2008, 10:02 PM
By JASON REMILLARD
SUDBURY - One of the best runs of any Western Massachusetts high school team came to an unfortunate end Wednesday night.
The Frontier Regional School volleyball team will not be traveling to Hudson for its fourth straight Division III state final after a hard-fought 27-
29, 25-19, 25-19, 26-24 semifinal loss to archrival North Reading Wednesday night at Lincoln-Sudbury High School.
North Reading (23-1) will face the winner of the other semifinal between Ursuline Academy and Millis in the state final Saturday at noon at
Hudson High School. The Hornets upended Ursuline to reach last year's final.
"The things that let you down are the same things that got you there," Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said. "I think North Reading deserved
to win that one."
The four-time Western Massachusetts champion Red Hawks (21-1) won their first two meetings with the Hornets in the 2005 semis and 2006
final before dropping last year's semifinal. It looked like another trip to the final was in the cards after taking the first set 29-27 and building a
14-10 lead in the second.
Perhaps North Reading suffered from the proverbial "bus legs" after arriving at the site late due to an accident on Route 128. However, the
Hornets shook that off quickly, taking their first lead of the second set at 19-15 and never looking back.
The third set followed a similar script, with the Red Hawks leading as late as 16-15 before the Hornets buzzed back. The key to North
Reading's ability to come back was its defense - specifically junior libero Nicole Cecchini, who made 26 digs.
Set four saw Frontier claw its way back from a 19-15 deficit to take a 24-22 edge. However, Amanda Koldy set a ball too close to the net for an
unfortunate error. North Reading got the next three points to end the match, as their raucous fanbase rushed the court.
"This is a special group," MacDonald said of the nine seniors who saw their stellar careers end.
Five members of this year's Division III All-State team took the court Wednesday - Alyssa Stankowski, Franny Cicia and Sammy Clairemont of
Frontier and North Reading's Adrianna Doyle and Alison Friberg. The team was selected this week by the Massachusetts Girls Volleyball
Three-time All-Stater Stankowski led Frontier with 11 kills and keyed her team's comeback in the fourth set with a strong serving run, while
Clairemont notched nine kills. Repeat selection Cicia handed out 20 assists, and her North Reading counterpart Friberg had 28. Doyle was
big at the service line, accounting for 27 points and three aces.
Not only has Kerianne Forest coached North Reading in all four of its meetings with Frontier, she also played for the Hornets against the then-
Redskins in a mid-1990s state semifinal.
"We're senior heavy, they're senior heavy," Forest said. "They're an intimidating team with a very complex offense. We knew who their key
players were and went after them."
WMass Champions: Frontier turns back Indians' challenge for 3-0 title sweep
By MARK DURANT Recorder Staff
email this writer
Published: Monday, November 10, 2008
HOLYOKE -- Frontier Regional School volleyball coach Sean MacDonald was convinced that Turners Falls High School would give the Red
Hawks their toughest postseason test on Saturday.
He was right.
The Indians proved they were more than worthy of their No. 2 seeding, taking at least one lead in every game against their Northern Division
However, Frontier showed why it has been the dominant team of the decade. The top-seeded Red Hawks methodically reclaimed the lead in
all three games and eventually posted a 25-17, 25-14, 26-24 victory in the Western Massachusetts Division III Volleyball Championship at the
David M. Bartley Center.
It was a fitting conclusion to Frontier's fourth consecutive WMass crown for its nine seniors, including five-year starter Alyssa Stankowski, who
has been there for every point as a starter.
''It's an amazing feeling,'' she said with a glowing smile. ''Each year has been special, but it's finally my senior year, so it's bittersweet being my
last Western Mass. final. But I'm very happy we won.''
Frontier (21-0) opened up a 5-2 lead in the Game 1 before Sam Clairemont's service error gave the ball to Turners setter Jodi Hallett at 5-3.
Hallett proceeded to serve for the next five points, with help from kills by Emily Mailloux and Elysia Ollari and a key block from Carlyn Perry, to
put the Indians in front, 8-5.
Frontier responded with Alyssa Stankowski's crosscourt blast to stop the rally, then rallied with Amanda Koldy's four service points to retake
the lead, 10-8.
The game remained close until Clairemont's blast down the middle gave Frontier a 13-11 lead and got senior Franny Cicia to the service line.
Cicia served for an ace among her five points, and the Indians committed three unforced errors during that stretch, allowing the Red Hawks to
take command at 18-11. Turners never got closer, and Frontier closed it out when Ollari's kill attempt sailed just long.
Solid net play from Angela Marguet (five kills, nine digs, two assists) and Donna Bettencourt (five kills, two blocks, two digs) at the outset of
Game 2 helped the Indians take leads of 2-1 and 6-5, but Bettencourt's service error tied the score at 6-6 and put Alyssa Stankowski on the
line for the Red Hawks.
Stankowski (10 kills, four aces) used her jump serve to register the next six points, three of which came off devastating kills from younger
sister and eighth-grade sensation Cassidy Stankowski (seven kills, six aces), to build a 12-6 cushion.
At 14-8, Cicia toed the service line and reeled off three aces among her five points to extend the Hawks' lead to 19-8 lead, Cassidy
Stankowski followed two servers later with back-to-back aces off her jump serve to make it 23-10, and Izzy Harper ended the game by ripping
a kill down the middle into the open floor.
Turners (18-4) refused to go quietly, battling the Red Hawks in a final game that featured eight ties and four lead changes.
''I don't think Turners was afraid of us one little bit,'' said MacDonald. ''They don't roll over and die for anybody, and they showed it in the third
game. Turners did not fold, they pushed all-in. They really came after us and made us earn all the points.''
The Indians took their first lead at 9-8 before the Red Hawks retook the advantage and Cassidy Stankowski added two more service aces to
help Frontier build a 14-10 lead.
After a quick exchange of serves, Marguet served the Indians back into a 15-15 tie. After Frontier took the next two points, Hallett served an
ace among her five points and Turners moved ahead, 20-17.
Alyssa Stankowski stopped the rally promptly with a crosscourt kill, then she served for five straight points -- three of them aces -- to put
Frontier up 23-20. Turners pulled even at 24, but Clairemont fired home a kill down the middle and Cassidy Stankowski ripped one of her
trademark blasts down the line to close it out.
''We prepared very hard for (Frontier),'' offered Indians mentor Kristin Mullins. ''I couldn't have asked for more from them, especially my three
seniors (Hallett, Marguet and libero Ashley Costa).''
Frontier will face North sectional champion North Reading High School (22-1) on Thursday night at 7 in the state semifinals at Lincoln-Sudbury
It will be the fourth straight meeting between the schools. Frontier won in the 2005 semifinals and 2006 finals, while the Hornets won in last
year's state final.
Before he even knew who had won the North final, MacDonald didn't mince his words when asked about his preferred opponent.
''I said during the (third-set) timeout, 'I want to see North Reading. We're not sending anybody else to see North Reading.' That's the game
I've been waiting for,'' he said.
He and his high-powered Red Hawks got it.
Notes: With Wednesday's semifinal win over South Hadley, Alyssa Stankowski broke the area record for career wins on one varsity team. Her
career record is now 112-7. … Frontier is 3-2 against Turners in the finals. They also won 1992 and 2006. The Indians won in 1998 and 2004.
… Former head coach Carrie (Cooper) Fydenkevez, who was in attendance, coached the then-Redskins to four straight WM titles from 1991-
94. … Frontier is 9-4 in the finals since making its first appearance in 1990, losing to Amherst. … Turners, a 10-time WMass champion, was
making its 22nd appearance in the finals since the tournament began in 1976.
Frontier Regional takes WMass girls vollyball title with North Reading ahead
JASON REMILLARD, November 09, 2008 11:05 a.m.
HOLYOKE - Not that the Frontier Regional School volleyball team was looking past its competition on the court, but the Red Hawks couldn't
help but keep one eye on the future. The possibility of Frontier avenging its disappointing Division III state final loss to North Reading last fall
was too great to ignore, even in the middle of its Western Massachusetts Division III championship match Saturday at Holyoke Community
"I said during the (third-set) timeout, 'I want North Reading. We're not sending anybody else to see North Reading,'" Frontier coach Sean
The Red Hawks lived up to their end of the bargain by defeating Turners Falls 25-16, 25-14, 26-24 to win their fourth consecutive sectional
championship at the Bartley Center. A few minutes after the match, MacDonald got the good news he was waiting for.
Frontier will take on North sectional champion North Reading in a state semifinal at 7 p.m. Thursday at Lincoln-Sudbury High School. The Red
Hawks (21-0) and Hornets (22-1) have played in each of the three previous state tournaments. Frontier won a nail-biter in the 2005 semifinals
and again in the 2006 final before North Reading finally broke through a season ago.
The teams are such rivals that MacDonald conveniently took in a North Reading match on a Sunday afternoon while in the area for a coaches'
convention. Senior outside hitter Alyssa Stankowski has the most experience of any Red Hawk against the Hornets and is looking forward to
renewing the rivalry.
"We didn't like how last year ended with them, and we definitely want some revenge for last year," said Stankowski, who paced Frontier with 10
kills and four aces. "Being my senior year, I don't want to leave it as them beating us in the state final, especially with the team we have this
Top-seeded Frontier didn't have as easy a time with North Division rival Turners Falls as the scores may indicate. For stretches of the third
set, especially, it looked as though the Indians (18-4) would force at least one more set. Turners took a 20-17 lead on a deft touch shot by
setter Jodi Hallett, but Frontier clawed back to lead 23-20.
The Indians pushed back to 24-24 before Samantha Clairemont and Cassidy Stankowski put it away for the Red Hawks.
"We prepared very hard to play this team," Turners coach Kristin Mullins said. "They were ready to go."
Frontier played pretty impressively in taking the first two sets by commanding scores. Serving again set the tone, as the Hawks racked up 14
aces as a team to finish with 60 in three matches of this tournament. Whether it was the blistering jump-serving of Cassidy and Alyssa
Stankowski or the traditional approach of setters Franny Cicia and Amanda Koldy, Frontier got the ball in play consistently.
"We've been practicing jump serves for pretty much this whole season," said Cicia, who handed out 20 assists. "They're serving really hard
and it's really hard to return."
Cassidy Stankowski notched seven kills, while Samantha Clairemont had nine. Turners was led by five kills each from Angela Marguet and
Donna Lee Bettencourt, 15 digs and 11 assists from Jodi Hallett.
Frontier aims for title
Saturday, November 08, 2008
By JASON REMILLARD
When the Frontier Regional School volleyball team began its recent run of success, one of its best players was just a fourth-grader chasing
balls on the sideline during warmups.
Now, Cassidy Stankowski is a rarity: an eighth-grader already in her second season as a varsity starter. Her mission this season is to send
older sister Alyssa out with a fourth consecutive Western Massachusetts Division III championship with a win over Turners Falls at 4 p.m.
Saturday at Holyoke Community College.
From there, the goal is a third state title in four years.
"I'd like to send all of our nine seniors out with a big bang, and that would be great to win states again," said Cassidy Stankowski, who made a
seamless transition this season from libero to outside hitter.
Alyssa Stankowski, arguably one of the top players in Western Massachusetts in recent memory, was an eighth-grader herself when the Red
Hawks made the first of their five straight trips to the final match. Frontier lost to Turners that day, but Alyssa would like to avenge that defeat
as a senior.
"Each year is exciting, and you want to win," said Alyssa, who is certain to earn her third straight selection to the Division III All-State team next
week. "Especially being my senior year, I really want to win this."
The Indians won't be an easy out, however. Coach Kristin Mullins can rely on the dynamic duo of outside hitter Angela Marguet and setter Jodi
Hallett to provide plenty of scoring opportunities. The key, according to Mullins, is not to let the Red Hawks take her squad out of its game
early, as they did in their second meeting this season.
"The key is to just try to keep everything focused on skill and not mental," Mullins said. "I think being at a neutral court will be better for both
Frontier volleyballers eye championship
By MARK DURANT Recorder Staff
[ Originally published on: Thursday, November 06, 2008 ]
SOUTH DEERFIELD -- The Frontier Regional School volleyball team likes to win championships in bunches.
On Saturday, the top-seeded Red Hawks will have the opportunity to win their fourth consecutive Western Massachusetts championship after
dismissing No. 4 South Hadley High School, 25-17, 25-12, 25-12, in a Division III semifinal match Wednesday night at Goodnow Gymnasium.
The 20-0 Red Hawks -- who also won four straight titles from 1991-94 -- will face Northern Division rival and No. 2 seed Turners Falls High
School (18-3) for the third straight season on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Holyoke Community College's Bartley Center.
Kendra Ouimette's four service points, including a pair of aces, staked Frontier to an early 8-2 lead in Game 1.
South Hadley stayed within striking distance, closing the gap to four while Frontier struggled at the service line (seven errors), but sisters
Alyssa and Cassidy Stankowski, along with some well-timed tips by Izzy Harper, helped Frontier build a 19-10 lead.
The Tigers could only get as close as seven (24-17) before Cassidy Stankowski finished it off with a nice tip shot that wasn't returned.
South Hadley came to life after Cassidy Stankowski (11 aces, nine kills) reeled off four aces during a six-point run to open Game 2. Her
service error made it 6-1 before the Tigers rallied to tie the score at 8-8 courtesy of three service points apiece from Colleen Cockley and Tori
Daniels, coupled with four unforced errors by the Red Hawks.
By that time, Frontier head coach Sean MacDonald had seen enough and called a timeout.
''I think five of six points were our mistakes,'' he recalled. ''I just don't think we were on the same page offensively and defensively. We set a
few balls that no one was ready to hit, and we weren't in sync. I think it was an issue of focus.''
The one minute break appeared to do the trick. After a side-out on South Hadley, Alyssa Stankowski fired home consecutive aces to make it
The Tigers were able to keep the deficit at three (13-10) until Sam Clairemont's kill moved Franny Cicia to the service line. Cicia's two aces
during her six-point run extended the Frontier lead to 20-10, and South Hadley could only get it as close as nine (21-12) before Cassidy
Stankowski served out the game with four straight points, including two aces.
MacDonald wasn't thrilled with the serving, but that was about it.
''We missed a few too many serves for me (13 in all),'' he said. ''I know we're trying to serve tough, but I don't like to miss two in a row. Other
than that, we had a couple of bad spots and rest of it looked pretty smooth. So I can live with a couple (service) errors.''
After alternating points to open the third game, Amanda Koldy stepped to the line and served the Hawks to an 8-2 lead with two aces and a
couple of well-placed hits by Tessa Goodhind.
South Hadley tried to stay close, but inconsistent serving ultimately did in the Tigers. After a service error to make it 15-6, Cassidy Stankowski
used her jump serve to register three straight and extend the Frontier advantage to 18-6.
The Red Hawks' lead fell below double figures once after that, when Tori Daniels served for three straight points to make it 21-12, but a kill
from Alyssa Stankowski (11 kills) set up Koldy for three more service points to end the match in just 56 minutes.
Now MacDonald and his charges can focus on trying to beat Turners in the finals for the third straight year.
''This has been a special group of kids, they've been there for a long time,'' he said. ''It's special to go back there for the fifth time, and
Turners is always a hot rivalry, especially in the finals. We're pumped to be back there.''
Cicia finished with 20 assists, while Clairemont totaled seven kills.
With the victory, Alyssa Stankowski surpassed former Pioneer Valley Regional School basketball star Adam Harrington for the most wins by an
area athlete in a career in a single sport. Stankowski, a fifth-year letter-winner, has a career record of 111-7.
Frontier Regional wins WMass Division III volleyball semifinal
Thursday, November 06, 2008
By JASON REMILLARD
SOUTH DEERFIELD - Teams in all sports seem to like the inspirational slogan on the back of a T-shirt idea.
The 2004 Red Sox had "Why Not Us?", while Ray Bourque's Colorado Avalanche rode "Mission 16W" to a Stanley Cup in 2001.
The Frontier Regional School volleyball team's warmup T-shirts reflect the Red Hawks desire to get back to familiar territory - a nice, long
"We didn't come this far to only come this far," says the message adorning Frontier's red shirts.
"(Coach) Sean (MacDonald) has been telling us that for as long as I can remember," senior captain Alyssa Stankowski said. "I saw it in a
magazine over the summer and told Sean 'That's what I want on our T-shirts."
The Red Hawks took the second step on their tournament voyage Wednesday by defeating visiting South Hadley 25-17, 25-12, 25-12 in a
Western Massachusetts Division III semifinal.
Top-seeded Frontier (20-0) will meet No. 2 Turners Falls (18-3) in the championship match at 4 p.m. Saturday at Holyoke Community College.
Turners Falls defeated Lee 25-14, 25-12, 25-13 in the other semifinal to earn its first trip to the final since 2004, when it beat Frontier.
"I thought we did some good things, but I thought we struggled a bit," MacDonald said. "We had a couple of bad spots, but the rest went pretty
Stankowski, a two-time All-State selection, had 11 quiet kills, but it was younger sister Cassidy who made the biggest impact. The eighth-
grader, already in her second season as a varsity starter, had nine kills and served 11 of Frontier's 20 aces.
Frontier's jump serving looked untouchable at times but also led to too many free points for South Hadley when it failed.
"One of our goals was to be able to jump serve in every game," Cassidy Stankowski said. "Since we've been doing that, it's been improving
how much we win by."
The Bartley Center court at HCC is like a second home for the Red Hawks, who are making their fifth straight final (11th overall) and vying for
their ninth title and second "four-peat" in school history (1991-94).
The ultimate goal for Frontier, however, is a fourth straight trip to the state final and third championship in that span. That loss to rival North
Reading was one of the factors behind the T-shirt slogan.
"That loss definitely has been our motivation, and it's making us work so hard for another state title," Alyssa Stankowski said.
No. 4 South Hadley (18-4) took advantage of some early Frontier errors, especially in jump-serving, to make the first set very respectable.
The Red Hawks hung on for the 25-17 win when Cassidy Stankowski's tip at the net found a hole in the defense. Kendra Ouimette kicked off
the serving for Frontier with two aces and had three in the set.
Set No. 2 saw the Tigers rebound from an early 6-0 hole to tie it at 8. MacDonald settled his team with a timeout at that point, after which
Frontier looked like itself again. South Hadley scored only four points the rest of the set, and Cassidy Stankowski finished it off with her
seventh ace of the set.
The third set was pretty much all Frontier. Cassidy Stankowski served four straight aces to build a 19-6 lead, at which point MacDonald
emptied his bench.
"Everyone who came in the game played really well," Cassidy Stankowski said. "Even off the bench, everybody did a great job tonight."
Katie Daniels had 12 kills and eighth assists, and Tori Daniels had 16 assists and eight digs for South Hadley.
Frontier Eighth-Grader Is The Real Deal
by Kyle Belanger, WMSJ Editor in Chief
Wednesday November 05, 2008, 11:51 AM
Cassidy Stankowski is the real deal.
One part Bambi and three parts Annie Oakley, the Frontier Regional School
eighth-grader is the region's most fascinating young volleyball player. With a
jump serve that seamlessly combines grace and violence, and a sharpshooter's
mentality from the outside hitter position, there's no telling what Stankowski can
accomplish with four full years left in a Red Hawks uniform.
"I've been around the team for a long time, basically since I first started playing
early in elementary school," Stankowski said in the moments following her
team's 50-minute dismissal of Monument Mountain in Tuesday's WMass
Division III quarterfinal match.
Indeed, Stankowski's presence around Frontier volleyball dates back to the
earliest stages of coach Sean MacDonald's tenure. Stankowski's father, Jack,
has served as the team's assistant coach during MacDonald's six-year stint in
South Deerfield. Her older sister, Alyssa, is currently a senior captain on the
team and has served as the face of Frontier volleyball over the past few seasons.
"She's been around the program ever since I've been here," MacDonald said of Cassidy, who suited up on varsity as a seventh-grader as
well. "She's been keeping stats, or hitting with the girls, or whatever. So when it was finally time to put a uniform on her last year, it didn't feel
weird at all. It was a long time coming."
In Tuesday's dominating performance over the Spartans, it would have been easy for any of the Red Hawks to take their foot off the gas. And
with a 25-5, 25-8, 25-15 win in their pockets, the Hawks would not have been blamed for such a move.
Not so for the youngest Stankowski, whose blistering serve resulted in 13 of her team's 27 aces. She also led the team with nine kills. And in
the postgame, while most of her teammates had no need to towel off their brows, Stankowski looked and breathed as though she'd just
finished a 5K run.
Yes, she is that intense.
"She's so competitive, with herself and with others, and that's going to go
a long way in helping her make her mark over the next four years,"
Alyssa Stankowski said. "She's a gym rat. We do (plyometrics), and she's
the only one that you can see will do them all the way through just to get
better. She wants to be as good as she can be - better, actually - all the
time." Her "gym rat" rep is well known around the team. "Jack's the
assistant coach, and he's got a key to the gym, so on our off days, he's
trying to get stuff done around the house and she's like, 'C'mon, dad, let's
go to the gym, I want to work on my jump serve,'" MacDonald added with
a laugh. "She's a natural. She's a special one." It's that dedication to
improvement - as well as finishing her plyos - that has led Cassidy
Stankowski to some tremendous heights. Not only did she grow three
inches between last year and this year, but standing at just 5-foot-6,
she's already able to leap and touch well over 9 feet. And don't forget,
she's only in eighth grade.
"She's so much farther along than I was at that age," Alyssa Stankowski
admitted without hesitation. "I was playing varsity, but I was a libero. She's
a starting outside hitter - and one of the best around. That's remarkable."
Also remarkable is the Stankowski volleyball legacy that Cassidy will inherit once Alyssa graduates this year. The Red Hawks have not lost a
Western Mass Tournament match since Alyssa Stankowski was an eighth-grader, herself. The team is in search of its fourth consecutive
WMass title, and third state championship in four years. In addition, 2008 marks the fifth consecutive year the team has garnered the No. 1
seed in the Division III pool.
It's a streak that is as remarkable as it is long - and one that is a testament
to the hard work and dedication of an entire program. But it's also provided
the Stankowski family with an unbelievable opportunity.
"It's been an unbelievable experience to play a varsity sport with my
younger sister," Alyssa said. "It's not something that many people can
say they've done. We spend so much time together, whether it's at
home, or at practice, or on the bus going to away matches."
It's also given Cassidy the opportunity to learn quite a bit from her older
sister, whom she credits, along with a slew of U.S. Olympians, as being
on of her biggest athletic influences.
And don't think the dynamic is lost on MacDonald.
"There's something special there, when you see them both out on the
court, passing to each other, communicating and really running the show,"
he finished. "Their relationship is something that the whole team has
The unbeaten Red Hawks (19-0) are back on the court in South Deerfield
tonight, when the play fourth-seeded South Hadley High School in the
Red Hawks open title defense with sweep
By Daily Hampshire Gazette
Created 11/05/2008 - 10:23
Monument Mountain offered little resistance to the Frontier Regional girls volleyball team which dominated Tuesday night as it began defense
of its Western Massachusetts Division 3 Tournament title.
The top-seeded Red Hawks swept the No. 9 Spartans 25-5, 25-8, 25-15 in the quarterfinals.
Frontier's serving keyed its attack with 27 aces.
"We were serving really well. They had a tough time returning them," Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said. "We put them on the defensive."
Eighth-grader Cassidy Stankowski had nine kills and 14 aces, while her older sister Alyssa, a senior, had six kills for the Red Hawks.
Frontier (19-0) will host No. 4 South Hadley (18-3) at 7 tonight in the semifinals.
Hawks keep rolling
By KYLE BELANGER Special to The Recorder
email this writer
Published: Wednesday, November 05, 2008
SOUTH DEERFIELD -- If it's the postseason, then the Red Hawks Express doesn't break for anyone.
No. 9 Monument Mountain Regional High School provided little more than a speed bump in the road to another regional title for the top-
seeded Frontier Regional School girls' volleyball team. The three-time defending champs steamrolled the Spartans, 25-5, 25-8, 25-15, in a
Western Massachusetts Division III Tournament quarterfinal match at Goodnow Gymnasium.
With the win, Frontier (19-0) advances to today's tournament semifinal against No. 4 South Hadley High School (18-3) in South Deerfield.
All told, Frontier's dismantling of the Spartans took just 50 minutes to complete -- a number that was slightly inflated by the fact that the Red
Hawks played the entire third game without the services of senior captain Alyssa Stankowski.
With the match ostensibly in the bag, Red Hawks coach Sean MacDonald opted to sit his senior leader to garner some valuable playing time
for the rest of his charges.
''We don't get to sit together very much, Alyssa and I, that's for sure,'' MacDonald quipped. ''But it's nice to get the younger girls some playing
time in a meaningful spot. There's a delicate balance between taking care of business today and preparing tomorrow's players for the future.''
For Stankowski, the game-long stint on the bench also felt a bit foreign.
''I don't sit on the bench much,'' said Stankowski with a smile. ''But I've got a ton of confidence in all the girls on this team, so I know that if it's
not me out there, it'll be someone else doing just as well.''
Stankowski finished the match with six kills, including a cross-court bomb to put the finishing touches on the Red Hawks' 25-2 win in Game 1.
Frontier's loudest points came from the jump serve of another Stankowski, eighth-grader Cassidy. The intensely focused right-handed hitter
was a one-girl wrecking crew for most of the match, using her deceptively powerful frame to serve Monument into submission.
In Game 1, Cassidy Stankowski served eight consecutive points, bringing her team from a 8-2 edge to an insurmountable 15-2 lead. Game 3's
run of six consecutive points was arguably more important, as they turned a 2-1 deficit (Monument's only lead of the night) into a 7-2 lead,
effectively calming the nerves of the rest of her teammates, who may have been scrambling to fill the whole left by Alyssa's absence.
When all was said and done, the younger Stankowski finished with 13 aces (the team totaled 27) and nine kills.
''Once the lights go on and they start keeping score, Cassidy is playing for keeps,'' MacDonald said.
Senior Samantha Clairemont was also a pivotal part of the Red Hawks' offensive attack, racking up six aces and three kills, while Kendra
Ouimette notched five aces of her own.
Frontier aims for return to girls' volleyball title game
By Eli Rosenswaike
Created 10/30/2008 - 09:26
The Frontier Regional girls volleyball team's bid for a fourth straight Division 3 state title appearance will begin Monday in the quarterfinals of
the Western Massachusetts Division 3 Tournament.
The 18-0 Red Hawks are seeded No. 1 in the sectional tourney, and they are motivated by their 3-2 loss in last year's state championship
match against North Reading.
"I think it lit a fire under them," Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said about losing the five-set match to the Hornets. "The first time you're there
you don't know what to expect, but we've been there before and the experience will only help."
Frontier and No. 4 South Hadley (17-3) have first-round byes in the Division 3 tourney.
No. 5 Belchertown (13-7) and No. 11 Easthampton (11-7) will play first-round matches Friday.
The Red Hawks host the winner of No. 8 Ware (11-7) vs. No. 9 Monument Mountain (11-7) in the quarterfinal at 7 p.m. Monday. Ware hosts
Monument Mountain at 7 p.m. Friday.
Also at 7 p.m. Monday, the Tigers face either the Orioles or No. 12 Franklin Tech (9-9). They play in Belchertown at 7 p.m. Friday.
Under first-year coach Eric Cestero, South Hadley is in the playoffs for the second consecutive season. Led by sisters Katie and Tori Daniels,
the Tigers are looking to make a statement this season after losing in the quarterfinals last year to Frontier.
"I think this is the year that the South Hadley girls will be known," Cestero said. "I don't think the kids were expecting to get in last year, so they
were just happy to participate in the tournament. This year they are looking to compete."
Belchertown is excited to make the tournament after a 7-13 season in 2007, and Orioles coach Maggie Folli expects her team to be a threat.
"The team is pumped, but they don't want to be there and just go home," Folli said. "I hope we do well, but most importantly I hope we
represent Belchertown and give whoever is on the other side of the net a good fight."
The Orioles defeated the Eagles twice during the regular season.
"We beat them both times in four sets, but we give them credit because they definitely made us play," Folli said.
Easthampton draws No. 6 Pioneer Christian (15-4) in the first round. The site of that match has yet to be determined, but coach Molly
Jacobson is more concerned about the unique playing style of Pioneer rather than where the match will be played.
"They are a tough team to play against with their unorthodox style of volleyball," Jacobson said.
Pioneer tends to do a lot of center-dumping, which results in returning the ball in just two hits rather than the typical three.
"It really catches you off-guard because you constantly train and practice for the third ball," Jacobson said. "But we've played them twice and
we'll be ready for it."
The teams split those two meetings.
With a 15-3 overall record and 13-3 mark in the deep Eastern division, Amherst Regional may have expected a better seed than No. 4 in the
Western Massachusetts Division 2 Tournament. However, coach Kacey Schmitt said it does not matter much.
"We have to go through the top teams no matter where we are," she said.
The Hurricanes have a first-round bye and will host divisional foe and No. 5 Minnechaug (11-7) in the quarterfinals at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Amherst swept the first match at home and lost 3-2 at Minnechaug.
"In a way that's good, because if we swept them again we may get too complacent," Schmitt said.
Led by senior sisters Heather and Jenn Mears, the Hurricanes are an experienced team.
"We have really strong leaders and that's always an asset going into the tournament," Schmitt said. "Volleyball is such a momentum sport and
we've been playing well lately so I think they're ready for the challenge."
Should Amherst get to the semifinals, it could face No. 1 East Longmeadow (15-2). The Spartans and Hurricanes split four matches this
season. East Longmeadow defeated Amherst in last year's championship match.
"Playing at East Longmeadow is tough because they have really rabid fans," Schmitt said. "All four matches were tooth and nail this season."
Frontier and East Longmeadow are the top seeds for the Western Mass. high school volleyball
Frontier and East Longmeadow earned the top seeds in their divisions for the Western Massachusetts tournaments.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
By JASON REMILLARD
Each of the upcoming Western Massachusetts girls high school volleyball tournaments has its own intriguing storyline.
In Division II, a trio of league rivals - Longmeadow, Amherst Regional and East Longmeadow - that has beaten up on each other all season
are all pretty safe choices to win the championship.
In Division III, the only drama is whether a team can pull off what is virtually unthinkable - keep Frontier Regional of South Deerfield from
winning a fourth straight title.
As expected, Frontier secured the No.1 seed in Division III at Wednesday's seeding meeting at Turners Falls High School. East Longmeadow
edged out its two Eastern Division rivals and Southern B Division champion Chicopee Comprehensive for the top spot in Division II.
Play in both divisions begins with preliminary round matches Friday.
"Our goal is to win another state championship, but to get to that goal, you have to focus on some intermediate goals," Frontier coach Sean
MacDonald said. "In one sense, we're 18-0, which is a great accomplishment, but last year we played a really good state semifinal then had
probably our worst match of the year in the state final."
Turners Falls (16-3), which finished second behind Frontier in the Northern Division, earned the No.2 seed in Division III.
The real battle, however, will be between the Eastern Division's elite. East Longmeadow (15-2) earned the top seed ahead of defending
champion Longmeadow (15-3) based on having one fewer loss, even though the teams split their regular-season meetings.
Amherst (15-3) and East Longmeadow split their four meetings this season - two in the regular season and two in weekend playday
Longmeadow split with East Longmeadow and defeated Amherst twice - needing five sets to win the regular-season finale.
"We've been back on our heels a couple times, especially against Amherst and East Longmeadow," Longmeadow coach George Mulry said.
"Those two teams have really picked out where our weaknesses are and put together some real good offense and defense against us."
East Longmeadow will open the quest for its first title against the winner of Friday's opener between 2006 runner-up Pittsfield and Putnam.
Chicopee Comp used its 18-1 record to leapfrog 2006 champion Amherst into the No.3 spot in the nine-team field.
MacDonald's Red Hawks are one of four teams that will get a respite from opening-round play in a 12-team bracket, along with Turners, Lee
(16-2) and South Hadley.
South Hadley (17-3) earned the No.4 seed by defeating Wahconah 3-0 in Tuesday's season finale. The score was incorrectly reported in
Hawks finish perfect season
Published: Tuesday, October 28, 2008 (SENIOR NIGHT)
Frontier Regional School wrapped up a perfect regular season on Monday night by defeating Belchertown High School, 25-15, 25-11, 25-11,
in Northern Division girls' volleyball action at Goodnow Gymnasium in South Deerfield.
Alyssa Stankowski, one of nine seniors who played their final home regular-season game, led the Red Hawks with a dozen kills and seven
digs. Franny Cicia and Amanda Koldy combined for 25 assists and seven service aces, while Sam Clairemont fired up nine aces to go
along with four kills.
Other seniors who contributed to the win included Abby DeWitt (nine digs, three aces), Ali Williams (two aces, two kills), Katie Rennie
(three digs), Tessa Goodhind (three aces) and Izzy Harper (two kills, one block).
The Red Hawks (18-0 overall, 16-0 North) extended their division winning streak to 40 matches and all but assured themselves of the No. 1
seed in the upcoming Western Massachusetts Division III Tournament.
The Orioles finished their season 13-7 overall and 12-4 in the North.
Frontier's junior varsity team completed its second straight 18-0 season by edging Belchertown, 25-11, 14-25,
Frontier finishes unbeaten
By Daily Hampshire Gazette
Created 10/28/2008 - 09:23
hs roundup sports
The Frontier Regional girls volleyball team put the finishing touches on an undefeated regular season with a 3-0 victory over Belchertown
The Red Hawks (18-0, 16-0 Northern) won 25-15, 25-11, 25-11 in South Deerfield. Frontier's winning streak against teams from western
Massachusetts is now at 53.
"The goal at the beginning was to get back to the state finals and win it," Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said. "The 18-0 is really nice and to
have the win on senior night, but we have our sights set on redemption from last year."
After winning Division 3 state titles in 2005 and 2006, the Red Hawks lost 3-2 in last year's state championship match.
Frontier played all three sets Monday with a rotation of just seniors.
Alyssa Stankowski had 12 kills and seven digs, while Samantha Clairemont added four kills and nine aces, including seven in the third
Izzy Harper (two kills), Tessa Goodhind (three aces), Ali Williams (two kills, two aces), Katie Rennie (three digs), Franny Cicia (13
assists), Amanda Koldy (12 assists) and Abby Dewitt (nine digs, three aces) also were all honored on senior night.
Belchertown (13-7, 12-4) also ended its regular season.
Tournament seeds will be announced Wednesday at 9 a.m. at Turners Falls.
Athlete of the Week: Francene Cicia
by The Republican Sports Desk Monday October 13, 2008, 9:14 PM
FRANCENE CICIA, Frontier volleyball
The 2007 Division III All-State selection is even better this season,
as Cicia and her Red Hawks are out to a 13-0 start; She had 12 assists
in a 3-0 win over Millis at the Hall of Fame Showcase of Champions.
Team: Boston Red Sox
Music: Classic rock
Superstition: Has special pregame handshake with fellow setter Amanda Koldy.
TV show: "That '70s Show"
Of note: Cicia was a member of the Western Mass. Elite Junior Olympic squad that placed second in New England; member of
Frontier's band and "As Schools Match Wits" team
On how familiarity with her hitters helps her setting: "I've set for these girls for years, and it's great to know what they like.
Whenever I set something and they don't hit it right, I can usually already tell what was different about the set and why they
didn't hit it as well."
On being named All-State last season, along with teammate Alyssa Stankowski: "It was great to
be recognized, especially as a setter, because we give the outside hitters glory and are usually in the background."
Volleyball stars at HCC
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
By JASON REMILLARD
HOLYOKE - To a volleyball enthusiast, this was heaven on hardwood.
Three courts spread out on the gym floor at Holyoke Community College's Bartley Center, the site of simultaneous matches. High school
teams from several states waiting in the stands for their turn, like basketball players on the playground who have "next."
The Spalding Showcase of Champions Volleyball Hall of Fame Invitational lived up to its lofty moniker, especially in the two days of
round-robin action Sunday and Monday.
Five teams won championships in their respective brackets, but it was high school volleyball that was the big winner.
"It's awesome to see all these teams. We never get to play against Chicopee High or teams like that," said Jessie Schnepp, whose East
Longmeadow squad bested Amherst for the Gold Bracket title Monday. "It's great to see them before the (Western Massachusetts)
While teams from other parts of the state joined those from New York, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Maine on Sunday, Monday
belonged to a dozen programs from Western Massachusetts. Broken up into three pools of four, the teams played a total of 10 25-point
After round-robin play ended, the teams were seeded into Gold and Silver brackets based on overall record. Amherst earned the top seed
in the Gold over East Longmeadow by virtue of a one-point difference in margin of victory.
The two Eastern Division rivals met in the final, and it definitely lived up to expectations. East Longmeadow pulled out a 25-17, 16-25, 15-11
win in the best-of-3 match.
"We're very evenly matched," Amherst coach Kacey Schmitt said. "On any given day, I guess anybody can take it. It's a fun rivalry."
Three-time defending Western Massachusetts Division III champion Frontier Regional fared well in Sunday's play, placing second in its pool
before losing to eventual champion Hendrick Hudson of Montrose, N.Y., in a Gold Bracket semifinal.
The Red Hawks went 7-3 in pool play and had to face New Hampshire Division I champion Salem, New York state champion Hendrick
Hudson and New York runner-up Burnt Hills.
"We hung in there. We beat Salem, and we looked good," Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said. "We got a lot of compliments about our
Lee defeated Chicopee in two sets to win Monday's Silver Bracket final. Hendrick Hudson (Gold), Salem (Silver) and Newton North (Bronze)
were Sunday's champions.
The round-robin "playday" format came about after the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association approved teams in the state to be
able to play in two per season. Teams in New York, by contrast, can play in as many as they want as long as they have 24 competitive
dates per season between league matches and playdays.
MacDonald, who helped Holyoke athletic director Aaron Patterson in organizing the showcase, said the next step is to try to talk the MIAA
into allowing more.
"We're going to try to collect some feedback from those involved and present it to the MIAA at the next volleyball meeting," MacDonald said.
VOLLEYBALL Hall of Fame Showcase Frontier 3, Millis 0: Cassidy Stankowski had 22 service points - including 11 straight in the first
set - as Frontier (13-0) prevailed at Holyoke Community College. Older sister Alyssa Stankowski added 12 kills. Cassidy Stankowski was
chosen as Frontier's "Outstanding Player of the Match"
Turners Falls tries to stay close to Frontier in girls volleyball
by Nancy C. Prajzner
Thursday October 09, 2008, 10:04 PM
By RUSS HELD
Nothing has been conceded yet, but the writing is pretty much on the wall in high school volleyball's Northern Division.
Frontier Regional sits on top of the standings with an 11-0 league record, pretty much in control as three-time defending Western
Massachusetts Division III champions.
Close behind are Turners Falls and Belchertown, who met Thursday in a battle for second place.
Turners Falls took care of business, posting a 25-13, 25-19 and 25-19 win over the host Orioles.
Angela Marguet led Turners (9-2, 8-2) with nine kills, three aces and 21 digs, while Elysia Ollari added five kills, three aces and six digs.
Teammate Donnalee Bettancourt added five kills and an ace.
Belchertown dropped to 9-4 overall, 8-3 in league play.
Turners was a 3-1 winner when the teams met at Montague Sept. 15.
Frontier 3, Mohawk 0: At South Deerfield, Holly DeWitt had three aces and three digs to lead the host Red Hawks to a 25-2, 25-17, 25-14
win. Teammate Franny Cicia added nine aces and five assists.
April Sheldon led Mohawk with two aces and seven kills.
Spalding Volleyball Hall of Fame Showcase of Champions this weekend
by The Republican Sports Desk
Thursday October 09, 2008, 5:48 PM
By JASON REMILLARD
Thanks to a new rule enacted by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, this year's Spalding Volleyball Hall of Fame
Showcase of Champions will take on a different look.
When play begins Friday and Saturday at Holyoke Community College, the format will be the same as last year's inaugural edition. Several
matches will feature teams from Western and Eastern Massachusetts, as well as Maine, New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.
Sunday and Monday, however, the Showcase shifts to a pair of round-robin tournaments to take advantage of the MIAA's decision to allow
one-day "playdays" in which teams can take part in matches that do not count toward their record.
"They get a lot of volleyball played in one day against a lot of different opponents," said tournament director Aaron Patterson, athletic
director for the Holyoke Public Schools. "They really get to see how they measure up and get them prepared for postseason play."
Sunday's tournament features defending Western Massachusetts champions Frontier Regional and Longmeadow among a crowded field
from New England and New York. The Monday playday is reserved for Western Massachusetts teams.
After the conclusion of round-robin pool play, the field will be broken up into three brackets seeded by record to determine champions in a
"It's not just play all day, then go home," Patterson said. "I think the thing that makes this work in the regular season is that there's an actual
tournament at the end of the day."
Friday and Saturday will follow last year's format of several showcase matches - beginning at 4:30 p.m. Friday with the "Founders' Game"
between Holyoke and Dean Tech. The highlight of Friday's slate is the 8 p.m. match between Longmeadow and defending Maine state
Turners Falls faces East Longmeadow in Saturday's 9 a.m. opener. Division II state champion Westborough and New York Class A
champion Hendrick Hudson are among the teams that will play that day.
"Some of the best girls volleyball at the high school level in the Northeast will be descending upon Holyoke," Patterson said.
Single day tickets are $4 for students and $8 for adults. Weekend tickets are $6 for students and $12 for adults. Please visit
www.volleyhall.org for more informaton.
Stankowski tallies 100th win
By THE DAILY HAMPSHIRE GAZETTE
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Alyssa Stankowski, A three-set win for the Frontier Regional volleyball team Monday over Pioneer Regional (5-3, 4-3 Northern) was just
another victory for the Red Hawks during an undefeated season. But for senior captain Alyssa Stankowski, it was a personal milestone.
The five-year starter registered career-win No. 100 in a Frontier uniform, helping the Red Hawks (9-0, 8-0 Northern) to victory with 10 kills
and three aces.
After the game, Frontier coach Sean MacDonald made sure his star player knew how special her accomplishment was.
"Coach told me that not many athletes have been able to accomplish that feat - it hasn't really hit me yet," Stankowski said.
Along with the 100 career wins, Stankowski has helped lead the Red Hawks to two state championships (2005, 2006), just missing a third
one last season.
Off to a 9-0 start this year, Stankowski is more focused on getting back to the state title game for the fourth season in a row. She knows her
latest accomplishment is something she'll think more about after her career is done.
Sixteen of the 100 wins have come in the playoffs. She reached her 100th win in just 107 career matches, good for a winning percentage of
Jump serve works for Red Hawks
By William D_Urso
Created 09/26/2008 - 09:26
SOUTH DEERFIELD - The Frontier Regional girls volleyball team took its eighth straight victory of the season Thursday with impressive
jump serves in a sweep of Athol.
"We tried to focus on more aggressive serving. We missed a couple early in the game, but after that I was really happy with the way we
served," said Red Hawks coach Sean MacDonald of the 25-9, 25-7, 25-15 win.
The strong serving was led by senior Franny Cicia who had 13 aces.
After going down 3-0 in the second set, Frontier rallied with a 10-0 run aided by a strong effort from Samantha Clairemont who finished the
match with 10 aces and eight kills.
"Individually I think it was one of my better games, and overall I think the team did really, really good, and the little things that we were trying
to work out came all together," Clairemont said.
That was echoed by her classmate, senior captain Alyssa Stankowski.
"I thought as a team we did a really good job with our jump serving," said Stankowski, who had six kills and two aces.
The Red Hawks have been working on their jump serves for about two years, and are one of the few teams in western Massachusetts which
use the technique.
"If you can ... throw off your opponent with something that they're not used to seeing, it can work to your advantage because they're not
ready for it," added Stankowski.
The Red Hawks focused on the jump serve in Thursday's match.
"They practice it every day, they just chicken out of it in the game, and I didn't let them chicken out of it today," MacDonald said. "I said you
just have to do it and if you miss you miss."
Frontier (8-0, 7-0 Northern) hasn't missed much this season.
The Red Hawks now have a 33-match winning streak against western Massachusetts teams since an Oct. 3, 2006, loss to Belchertown.
Frontier came off a disappointing 3-2 defeat against North Reading in the Division 3 state championship in 2007, after winning the previous
two Massachusetts titles.
The Red Hawks want to play for the championship again this year.
"I think it's something for us to work at," said Stankowski. "Obviously they're not going to hand us another state title. Losing it last year I
think gave us a lot of momentum coming into this season knowing that that's our goal - we want to make it back to the state final. It's what
we've been working for since last season ended."
After Thursday's victory, MacDonald said to the Red Hawks, "If you serve like that, the best teams you're going to face are going to have
Frontier Regional girls volleyball team defeats Longmeadow
by The Republican Sports Desk
Thursday September 18, 2008, 10:02 PM
By MIKE BOGEN
A main event in any arena in the country ... Elvis against Pat Boone,
Julia Child taking on a pound of ground round, Ted Williams versus
Or the reigning Division II Western Massachusetts girls volleyball champion
Longmeadow against the three-time Division III titlist Frontier Regional.
Thursday night, the Red Hawks won. Again.
Frontier, which last season handed Longmeadow, in three games, one of its
three defeats, put the first blemish on its 2008 record, topping the Lancers in
four games, 23-25, 25-22, 25-20, 25-19.
Alyssa Stankowski, the Red Hawks two-time all-state outside hitter, had 12 kills
and 15 digs, Fran Cicia, their other returning all-state player, had 15 digs and
senior middle hitter Samantha Clairmont added 15 assists to lead Frontier to its
sixth victory in as many starts.
Senior setter Natalie Zucker had 22 assists and Andrea Davis had 11 kills
and 11 digs for Longmeadow.
Hawks crush Wave
[ Originally published on: Thursday, September 18, 2008 ]
Cassidy Stankowski served five aces and picked up six kills on Wednesday as Frontier Regional School cruised to a 25-3, 25-2, 25-15 win
over Greenfield High School in a Northern Division girls' volleyball match in Greenfield.
Isabelle Harper won nine service points for the Red Hawks, including four aces. Ali Williams finished with five aces in the win.
Chloe Pierzchala picked up seven digs to lead the Green Wave. Erika Grover added six digs and Louisa Bollogino served four points in the
Frontier also won the junior varsity match, 25-10, 25-8.
Frontier sweeps Orioles
By Daily Hampshire Gazette
Created 09/10/2008 - 09:25
girls soccer girls volleyball high school sports local sports
The Stankowski sisters led the Frontier Regional girls volleyball team to a 3-0 win over Belchertown on Tuesday.
Junior Alyssa Stankowski finished with 13 kills and three aces for the Red Hawks, which won 25-13, 25-14, 25-15 in Belchertown.
Eighth-grader Cassidy Stankowski added six kills and eight aces, and senior middle hitter Samantha Clairemont chipped in with six kills for
Belchertown fell to 2-1.
Photography by Jeff Brown
Don't be fooled by her youthful looks, Frontier's Cassidy Stankowski
is not to be taken lightly.
Photography by Jeff Brown
Alyssa Stankowski is confident about handing the
reins to her little sister once she graduates this year.
Staff photo by CHRISTOPHER EVANS
Frontier Regiona's Francene Cicia, right, sets the ball in front of
Longmeadow's Andrea Davis during their match Thursday. Visiting
Frontier prevailed 3-1.