It’s also Senior Night for Harris, Wenzel, Hannah Dehner (fourth on the team in blocks and kills), Shannon Shovlain (defensive specialist), Jordan Nelson (third in aces) and Gabby Haan (defensive and serving specialist). Although they will play again at Yourd in the regional tournament, this is their night to shine.
“All six of these would talk about each other in pretty positive terms; that’s what you want,” Massey said.
He speaks of them that way, too.
“Monique is capable of filling up the box score like no other,” he said. “Erin is a multi-sport athlete with a strong competitive spirit. She has really stepped up her game and become the primary outside hitter. Hannah is one of the top student-athletes at Clinton. It says a lot when she says AP Calculus is her favorite course. Jordan has been part of the state championship tennis team, and she’s used that skill of reading the court and being clever as a server. Shannon is another member of the state championship tennis team, a defensive specialist for us, a great teammate and great kid in terms of getting along with everyone. Gabby is the third member of the state championship tennis team and another one who plays really good back-row defense for us and has a serve that has helped us at some critical moments.”
Senior Night could be an intangible favoring Clinton.
“It is an emotional evening at times, but we talk about compartmentalizing it,” Massey said. “You’re sad for Senior Night because you have great memories. It gives you focus and reason to play well, too.”
There’s also no doubt the Queens remember how tough it was to come up short in the regional final last year.
“It might (serve as motivation) for some of the kids; if it does, that’s fine,” Massey said. “I don’t focus on so-called payback. If an athlete or coach starts doing that, I think they are looking for outside motivation. I feel that needs to come from within, to strive to do your best all the time.”