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Long Island girls volleyball rankings

Connetquot teammates, from left, Mackenzie Cole, Nicole Migliozzi,

Connetquot teammates, from left, Mackenzie Cole, Nicole Migliozzi, Taylor Cole and Cassandra Patsos pose for a portrait during Newsday's 2016 girls volleyball season preview photo shoot on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016. Credit: James Escher

1. Connetquot: The Thunderbirds are loaded. Mackenzie Cole and Nicole Migliozzi are incredible at controlling the ball, while big hitters Cassandra Patsos, Mackenzie Taylor and Taylor Cole are offensive threats. Connetquot should be considered the favorites of Suffolk AA.

2. Massapequa: Another season, another chance at a Nassau AA crown. The Chiefs have won 16 consecutive county titles, and with reigning Newsday Nassau Player of the Year Jamie Smith returning, they’ll be a tough test again.

3. Wantagh: An experienced group led by returning Newsday All-Long Island second-teamer Jillian Graham, the Warriors have state championship hopes. Abigail Cullen, Christina Weir, Shannon Hagan and Olivia D’Antonio will play crucial roles.

4. Smithtown East: The Bulls have county title aspirations thanks to Haley Anderson, a returning member of the All-Long Island first team, and a supporting cast that includes Allie Brady, Steph Berdon and others.

5. Ward Melville: Seven seniors, six juniors and a sophomore all with big-game experience have the Patriots poised to compete in Suffolk AA. Senior Lara Atalay is a force.

6. St. Anthony’s: Always near the top of the Catholic League, the Friars are positioned to reclaim the CHSAA title from a Kellenberg team that lost significant talent. Hannah Vetter, Taylor Morrell, Nicole Karabaich and others will lead the way.

7. Baldwin: Bruins coach Louis Sepulveda said he intends to be in the Nassau AA final. With a core group of 12 returning players – led by Kemi Green and Isabelle Lawrence – Baldwin will be strong.

8. Hicksville: Seeded first in Nassau AA-II, the Comets are a talented group led by seniors Emily Markakis and Raeann Dong. Their biggest competition figures to include Oceanside and Herricks.

9. South Side: Kiersten Colvin and Grace Feiner headline a Cyclones team that returns much of its core talent from last fall. Setter Grace LaCava was injured last season but could make an impact in her senior season.

10. Kings Park: Lauren Kloos is the lone senior on a roster comprised of young talent. Libero Meagan Murphy and setter Haley Holmes are up-and-comers who could make a splash in Suffolk A.


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