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Massena captures top honors at Kate’s Team Volleyball Tournament


OGDENSBURG - In September of 2012, the Massena Girls Volleyball team hosted the first annual Kate’s Team Tournament.

Over $1300 was donated to Kate’s Team which was founded in memory of an outstanding Massena athlete Kathleen “Kate” O’Shaughnessy, who died one month short of her 23rd birthday after a courageous extended volley with melanoma on Dec. 13, 2000.

“Kate’s Team”, through its website, provides mutal support and encouragement and shares information regarding events and causes that are also dedicated to the fight against cancer.

In the past 12 years, Kate’s Team has raised over $200,000 for the world renown Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City where Kate O’Shaughnessy underwent treatments. It’s first fund-raiser was held at the 2000 Terry Fox Run in Central Park in New York City.

Kate was pushed around the course in a wheelchair and at the end she showed the magnitude of her courage and determination to fight the disease. Approaching the finish she pulled herself out of the chair, linked arms with her team and walked across the finish line.

The Kate’s Team website proudly reports that its donations were among those that helped fund research by Dr. Brentjens of the MSKCC. Reserach that led to treatments which produced complete and rapid remission for five patients with terminal leukemia.

The second annual Kate’s Team Volleyball Tournament almost didn’t happen. But through the cooperation of many people the day-long event staged at OFA on Monday.

Massena, which entered the game with a 7-7 record on the season, came away with the Gold Division Championship of the Block O Booster Club Kate’s Team Volleyball Tournament.

“The girls are so happy to win this tournment. It was total team effort. The girls played so well as a team,” said Massena ,oach Cassie Hayes.

Sue McLean, coach of the OFA team which won the Silver division title, took great pride in the team effort which allowed the tournament to be staged at OFA and raise a donation was is expected to be approximately $1000.

“The tournament was scheduled at Massena on Oct. 5 but was postponed because of the SATs. It was moved to Saturday but was postponed because a great number of our officials were working college matches,” said McLean.

“On Monday the officials were available but the Massena gym wasn’t available. So we brought the tournament to OFA with the help of a lot of people. It just was a great day of volleyball and everyone had a lot of fun.”

The tournament was held through the cooperation of the OFA and Massena school districts, the teams involved, the officials who all donated part of the time and the Block O Booster Club which sponsored the event so no admission was charged. Those attending were offered offered a chance to made donations to “Kate’s Team.”

The OFA Volleyball Program will host another fight-against-cancer fund-raiser on Thursday when it faces Canton in its annual Volley For the Cure Match. All those attending are asked to wear pink and invited take part in fund-raising events.

In pool play OFA 1 (OFA entered two teams), Peru, Massena and Northern Adirondack all finished with 5-1 records and Massena downed OFA in a three-game semi-final match.

The division finals were staged as a single game.

In the Gold Division finals Massena downed Peru 25-22 and OFA downed Madrid-Waddington 25-19 in the Silver finals. M-W reached the Silver Division finals with a win over Canton.

Following the tournament the four teams which went 5-1 in pool play received all-tournament awards for two players and Madrid-Waddington, Canton and the OFA 2 squad received one.

All-Tournament selections were: Samantha Villnave and Krista Loran of Massena, Taylor Fisher and Adrianna Compo of OFA 1,Sky Hoover of OFA 2, Jennifer King of M-W, Beth Pierson of Canton, Marrissa Johnson of Edwards Knox, Zoe Verrand and Katelyn Snyder of NAC and Taylor Higgins and Leah Pearson of Peru.

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