OSSINING, N.Y. – Kathryn Polletta, Danielle Gervacio and Saniya Chong finished up an outstanding volleyball season for the Ossining varsity team as the Pride won a league title, 18 matches and reached the sectional semifinals.
The trio, who were instrumental in the volleyball team’s success, are planning to continue their winning ways on the basketball court as the two-time defending Section 1 Class AA champions aim to make it three straight.
“I was so excited coming into basketball,” said Polletta during a brief break in practice Wednesday. “I can’t wait for the season to start. It’s the best feeling playing on this court with all the support we get from our fans. They are super.”
Polletta, along with Gervacio and Chong, who signed her letter of intent Wednesday to attend UConn, headline a group of 10 returning seniors. Joining this threesome is Alex Cristello, Daniella Ferrao, Valerie Andujar, Christine Kopera, Lydia Davis, Maria Estupman and Melanie Silverstein.
The seniors enabled Ossining to reach the state final four last year. They are happy to be together for another shot at a state title.
“It’s a great feeling to be on this team because we are all so close,” Polletta said. “Now we are really hungry. We know we can win but we have to play our best together.”
Ossining is going into the season focused on its primary goal – a state title. The Pride understand complacency or being overconfident is not going to sit well with veteran coach Dan Ricci, in his 22nd season.
“We’ve always been a humble team and that’s because Coach Ricci keeps us humble,” Polletta said. “If we get cocky, he will bring us right back down to reality and tell us that no one is going to hand the title to us because we won it two years in a row.”
This was demonstrated in in practice Wednesday as Ricci put the team through a high-intensity, intra-squad scrimmage.
Ossining opens the season Dec. 7 against Archbishop Molloy of Queens. Ossining will also travel to Phoenix, Arizona, on Dec. 19 for a tournament.