Brannan, Manzolini Earn Athlete of the Week Honors
One of this week's iBerkshires.com Athletes of the Week has had their team playing at top form all year.
The other might have their squad peaking at just the right time.
Junior Jackie Brannan and the Mount Greylock volleyball team are 10-1 this fall with a five-match winning streak after a trio of three-set sweeps to strat October.
According to the most recent in-season statewide power rankings, the Mounties are ranked third in all of Division 5 and trail only perennial power and 2021 state finalist Frontier among Western Mass teams.
Mount Greylock, which made it to the state semi-finals a year ago, has beaten all comers this fall except for D4 Wahconah.
Brannan is a big part of the reason why.
"Statistically, over the last seven matches, Jackie is our highest percentage server, attacker and passer," Mount Greylock coach Greg Geyer said. "She is not just a hard worker she is also always having fun and supporting her teammates and makes everyone better."
Brannan had a team-high 10 kills in Friday's road win at Chicopee and accounted for six kills, six aces and three blocks on Monday against Lenox.
Mount Greylock has two games this week: at East Longmeadow and at Berkshire County rival Lee.
The Monument Mountain boys soccer team does not have a guady record like Mount Greylock's volleyball team, but when you look past its 5-5-1 mark, you see that the Spartans' five losses have come against Division 3 Belchertown, D2 Agawam (twice) and Westfield and D1 Ludlow.
Division 4 Monument Mountain started the weekend ranked 11th in the state, and that was before Saturday's win over Mount Greylock.
Hudson Manzolini scored twice and assisted on the game-winner in the Spartans' 3-2, come-from-behind win.
"He's a center midfielder more naturally, and we were having such a tough time staying organized offensively, that we moved him into the [center forward] position," Monument Mountain coach Matt Naventi said of Manzolini. "We were slowly transitioning with a couple of shifts in our formation. But he, the last two games has played center forward, and he's scored four goals out of that position.
"He has such a great ability and knack to step back to the ball and be able to be composed, take a good touch and see players off of him that he's really tough to defend for any team."
Monumnet Mountain continues its tough schedule on Monday when it travels to Pittsfield before heading to Springfield for a rematch with Pope Francis (a 2-2 tie the first time they played) on Wednesday.