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Web spotlight: Savanna Zakman leading Hanover volleyball in new conference

SavannZakman is helping Hanover Central acclimate its new surroundings Greater South Shore Conference. | Ryan Haskell/For Sun-Times Media

Savanna Zakman is helping Hanover Central acclimate to its new surroundings in the Greater South Shore Conference. | Ryan Haskell/For Sun-Times Media

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VOLLEYBALL EXTRAS

Key NCC match may not be
rescheduled

Munster and Andrean, which are both undefeated in Northwest Crossroads Conference play, were set to face-off last Tuesday until record Septmber high temperatures forced the schools to cancel the match. Neither school’s gym has air conditioning so it was way too hot for the match to take place.

The problem is ... there may not be a make-up date. Both teams are pretty much booked up with matches over the next five weeks, so the scheduled Oct. 3 match at Munster may be the only chance each team gets to take a crack at each other.

Both are rolling right along, too, so it could be for all the marbles as each could be still undefeated in NCC play.

P-T Top 10

1. Munster

2. Valparaiso

3. Crown Point

4. Lake Central

5. Andrean

6. Hanover Central

7. Chesterton

8. Washington Twp.

9. LaPorte

10. Bishop Noll

Player
of the Week

Jordyn Moleski,
Chesterton

She recorded 37 digs and five aces in helping the Trojans win their own invitational on Saturday. Moleski, who was named tournament MVP, helped Chesterton defeat Boone Grove, 25-15, 25-6 and Washington Twp., 25-7, 25-15 in the championship round after finishing 2-0 in pool play. The Trojans have won five straight matches overall.

— Correspondent
Ryan Haskell

Updated: September 17, 2013 2:19AM



It’s still early but Hanover Central already has its rallying call for the rest of the season.

“This year our goal is to win our sectional because we’ve been butting heads with Andrean for a while,” junior setter/outside hitter Savanna Zakman said. “Losing to them (on Aug. 21) was devastating to us and we never want to feel that way again so that’s our goal in practice and it fires us up.”

It seems to have worked too. The Wildcats won seven straight after losing their second match of the season on the road to the 59ers and knocked off Greater South Shore Conference co-favorite Bishop Noll to pull ahead of the pack in their new conference.

Hanover Central moved to the GSSC after decades in the Porter County Conference. So far the Wildcats are 9-2 (3-0 in GSSC).

Zakman has been a catalyst for Hanover being one of two starters returning from last year’s 29-5 team.

And Wildcats coach Erin Zeller couldn’t ask for a better leader in her first year coaching the team.

“She just gives off this energy,” she said. “She has such a passion for the game and is so enthusiastic about playing. Her heart is in every point of the match.

“Savanna is just a natural leader and she has so much experience. She went to a ton of camps this summer to better herself and her game and her experience helps us out a ton on the court.”

Zakman said attending the University of Notre Dame camp, the Northern Michigan camp and the Lindenwood University camp in St. Charles, Mo., helped her get insight from college players and coaches and improve her game tremendously.

“It opens a different perspective for me,” she said. “It’s also big for my future. The more people looking at me, the better chance I have to play in college.”

The camps have also helped her become a teacher of sort.

She’s taken freshman setter Sam Guglielmo under her wing and helped her learn the Wildcats offense, while making her feel comfortable on the upperclass-heavy squad.

“She’s like the quarterback of the football team,” Zeller said. “She directs our offense. But she’s also a good teacher. We have another setter on the team and she has taken her under her wing and helped her learn the offense.”

It helps that both players take instruction from former Munster coach Naveed Nizam. The two girls already knew each coming into the season.

Zakman also knew several of her new teammates coming into the 2013 season. The four new starters have club experience. So it should be no surprise the team has won eight of its first nine matches.

Now they just have to keep it up.

“We’ve shown a ton of improvement since the Andrean game,” Zakman said. “We pick up our mistakes a lot better than we did and we are executing much better now.”



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