ALBION — Heading into the 2013 season, veteran Albion head coach Ann Capacci knew that building chemistry would be critical in the team’s success. After just a few games, Capacci felt the team was coming together perfectly fine, and the Lady Purple Eagles began to string together wins as a result.
The team kept the positive energy intact throughout the entire league season, and the losses never came. Albion completed Niagara-Orleans League play with a 3-0 victory over Newfane on Wednesday evening, posting a perfect league record of 12-0.
“Being senior night, the kids really wanted to put together a win, not only for our seniors but for the undefeated season,” Capacci said. “That’s been our goal all season long, and to get better with every game.”
Albion survived some late-set sloppy play to win the first set 25-18, before rolling through the second set by a 25-8 margin. The third set was a bit closer, as Newfane battled back to make it 15-10 at one point, but the Lady Purple Eagles pulled away late for a match-clinching 25-15 victory.
The Lady Purple Eagles made quick work of the second set thanks to strong play in all phases of the game, Capacci said.
“I think we were serving it pretty well,” Capacci said. “We were trying to set up our hitters, and we played some good defense behind them.”
The blemish-free record marks Albion’s first perfect season since 2010, and it’s a testament to coach Capacci’s constant belief that her kids have what it takes to win.
Capacci never likes to think that her team is outmatched if the girls can play together, and the confidence translated to the floor in 2013 — to the tune of 12 consecutive league victories.
“I always want them to win, and winning is the goal, but the real goal is getting them to play together,” Capacci said. “Because if you can get them to play together, winning will be the outcome of it.”
Kelsee Soule had 10 digs and five kills for Albion on Wednesday night, while Sara Millspaugh added nine kills. Chanyce Powell had three blocks, Brooke Wilson had 11 service points, and Meghan Hurley added 12 assists, two blocks and a kill.
Now, Capacci and the team will wait to learn their postseason fate in Tuesday’s Section VI seeding meeting at Frontier High School. The Lady Purple Eagles are a ‘B’ school for playoff purposes, while every other N-O team is a ‘C’ school, Capacci said.
The competition may be a bit more severe in the postseason, but Albion’s confidence is certainly as high as anyone’s. That’s what an undefeated season will do for you.
“They’re a good group, and they’re focused,” Capacci said. “And when they’re focused, they’re pretty tough. It’s a great group of kids. I think they continue to battle through, no matter what, and it makes a big difference.”
Wilson 3, Medina 0
WILSON — Emily Kams had six assists for the Lady Mustangs, but Medina fell in straight sets in an N-O match on Thursday evening.
Wilson won the first set 25-4, the second set 25-18 and the decisive third set 25-11.
Molley Gross had four assists for the Lady Mustangs, while Mandy McCauley contributed five kills.
Medina concludes the regular season at 4-8 in league play, while Wilson finishes at 9-3.