Last weekend, the Opening Ceremonies of Nationals served as a wonderful opportunity to highlight some of our outstanding Starlings by honoring them with the Starlings Spirit award. Each club had a winner and we asked some of our coaches and Directors to submit a short blurb about their winner. Here's what a few of them had to say!
Rancho Bernardo: "Our Spirit Award Winner is Shannon Zabaco! Shannon has blossomed into an amazing volleyball player, teammate, and role model. Her “never give up” attitude shows in her competitiveness to be the best, against the best. Even when the game isn’t in our favor or she is having a tough practice, she still manages to keep a smile on her face and continually gives it her all. Shannon’s attitude is gratefully contagious, and she has a character of integrity. She is intelligent, outgoing, and highly coachable. Yes I know the description mentioned makes Shannon sound like a "dream player" that every coach would love to have on their team…that’s because she is!"
Dallas: "Jordan Bruscato has been committed Starlings since an early age as the daughter of the owner and director of Dallas Starlings Volleyball Club. Jordan goes above and beyond to help and assist in every aspect of the program. From computer work to airing up balls, to packing the car for practice, to hauling equipment in and of the gym, Jordan does it all. Jordan attends practice even when sick, attends extra practices, and is at all Dallas Starlings events. Jordan is a great teammate and goes above and beyond, working hard every day."
Dallas: "Katrena Koellner is an outstanding player. She was injured early on this year and she attended every practice; never missing one. She is wildly good at finding her beast from within and has opened herself up to so many friendships in the volleyball world. The coaching staff admires her for tenacity even if it means being on the sidelines cheering on her team. Her will power and work ethic are impeccable and she is definitely respected by all in our program."
San Benito: "Ashley Noble is a person that no matter what is going on in her life, gives 100% to her teammates. She always wants to push herself and others to be better. Her drive to win not only pushes herself, but pushes her teammates."
Cedar Rapids: "Olivia Rogers has stepped up as a leader on and off the court. Not only is she dedicated to her academics, she is very passionate about playing volleyball indoor and outdoor. Her ability to stay positive and calm no matter the situation motivates her teammates to have fun and give it their all."
Ridgecrest: "16 year old Delaney Glen has been a Starlings Volleyball player for 5 seasons. In addition to being a member of our 17s team, she often travels with our 14s team, that her younger sister plays on, where she is learning to be an assistant coach, and has become a mentor to many of the younger players in our club. She has enlisted the help of other teammates and organized several practices and meetings with our u14s to help them prepare for the jump from middle school to high school. She volunteered to coach our Young Starlings group this year and is active in the Girl Scouts, on track to receive her Gold Award (highest honor in Girl Scouts) this fall. She plans to spend her summer practicing with her high school team, and volunteering at our local hospital."
Tuba City: “Cami is an amazing person inside and out. Strong minded and strong willed, she's remains humble and hard working. Volleyball is her life, and she's extremely coachable and compassionate. She's grown in the program and is taking her team to new heights with her leadership."
Toledo/ Puerto Rico: "These last months have been full of challenges and changes for our team following Hurricane Maria. Each family went through difficult times, but the girls always attended the practices, showing their commitment to the sport. Of these four girls I have to highlight Adriana De Jesus Serrano not only for her sports skills, but also because she is a leader among her peers. She provides support and advice to her teammates to achieve better collective work. Adriana embodies the Starlings Spirit of battling against all odds: she helped pull her team and community up, helping Puerto Rico rise again."
Palmdale: "Our Starlings Spirit Award for Palmdale Starlings Volleyball is Ayjah Landers. Ayjah has been dedicated and loyal to Palmdale Starlings for 3 consecutive years (since she was 12 years old) and has grown by leaps and bounds as both a competitor and a vibrant, young lady!"
Oceanside: "I've had the privilege of coaching Lily Hubbell for the last two Starlings Seasons. In the beginning of last season Lilly went through some tough times in her personal life, but never missed a beat on the court. She is always at practice early with a smile on her face, working hard and encouraging her teammates. She is a leader, well liked by everyone. She is an amazingly resilient, mature, and kind person whose wonderful personality rubs off on everyone around her. Lily is a talented athlete; one of my go to players who I can depend on to hit, set, serve or pass the ball in any situation."
Oak Hills: "McKenna Lindsay is always positive and willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in need."
Eastlake: "We nominated Camryn Anderson because she is a shining example of what 'Starlings Spirit' is about. She comes to every practice with a smile on her face, a positive attitude, and a willingness to learn. Being around Camryn, you just can’t help laughing and being happy. Her infectious positivity is a huge asset to our team and the Eastlake Starlings family! We love️ Camryn!"