"It Starts With Us"

The seniors of the 2023 Girls Varsity Volleyball Team.
  • September 18, 2023

    On the afternoon of Thursday, October 24, the Sayville Schools Girls Varsity Volleyball team was in the high school gym preparing for their first ever “Go Gold” game. 

    The special event, being celebrated throughout the district, raised money for childhood cancer and encouraged the entire district to wear gold for the special day.

    Before their game against Harborfields, team members re-laced their shoes with gold laces and braided each other's hair as pump-up music played throughout the gym.

    At the center of the preparations, the team's seven seniors buzzed around helping each other and their fellow teammates.

    “These seven knew coming in that they had big shoes to fill and they were up for the challenge and are really doing a great job making sure every girl in this program feels comfortable, feels wanted, feels accepted and can be successful,” Varsity Girls Volleyball Head Coach Debra Urso said of the seniors on her team.

    The seven seniors, Lily Coan, Faith Roben, Jessica Menze, Morgan Reese, Haydyn Proscia, Eilise Marino and Mia DeSimone, were all part of last season's team that won the Class A County Finals last year and advanced to the Long Island Championship. They credited last year's seniors for paving the way for them to be successful and demonstrating how to be good leaders.

    “We had them as role models, so we want to be role models for the girls that are coming after us,” the seniors concurred.

    Over the summer, senior Morgan Reese started up a “book talk” for the team where they all read “Make Your Bed” by William H. McRaven before the start of the season. On September 8, Reese was named Newsday's “Athlete of the Week” as well as earning the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) New York State Athlete of the Week honor for the week of September 4 - 10. On September 15, Reese and fellow senior Lily Coan were named to Newsday’s list of Top 50 Girls Volleyball Players for 2023.

    Coach Urso noted that the entire team is like a family but the leadership comes from her senior girls.

    “The team culture is just so amazing and that is a huge part of our success and that is led by the seniors on my team,” she said.

    The seniors said it best themselves when they all got together before the game.

    “It starts with us.”