Meet and greet the state champs

After winning the state championship this weekend, the Pierce College women’s volleyball team celebrated the sweetness of victory with ice cream sundaes in the company of family, friends and fans in the South Gym lobby Wednesday.

The festivities started at 2 p.m. and were organized by Athletic Director Bob Lofrano to recognize the team’s hard work and dedication throughout their undefeated season that led to their championship victory.

The team posed for photos and spoke with fans about their close championship games they played in Redding, Calif. while enjoying the sweets provided by the athletic department.

Also in attendance were Dean of Athletics Barbara Anderson, Head Coach Nabil Mardini and Ken Stanley, a former Pierce College coach that retired in 2004, after who the South Gym is named.

Along the walls are plaques and collages of past champions that had passed through the gym’s doors, with a collage dedicated to this team’s momentous victory to be added.

“We’d all like to thank our friends and family, and all the staff and everyone for coming and supporting us at the game,” said freshman Danielle Hochman. “It really meant a lot and it helped us through the whole tournament.”

Sophomore Veronika Ban, who delivered the final kill against Santa Rosa College to claim the championship, played a major role in the team’s victory.

“I just wanted to thank my team mates because I couldn’t have done it without them,” said Ban, “especially the sophomores because we went through a lot over these two years.”

Veronika Ban’s father, George Ban, who is arguably the team’s number one fan, wore his red Brahma fanatic attire that he wears to all of the games including a hardhat with a red flashing light and signs reading “Go Brahmas!” hung around his necks.

Ban also carries a number of signs and banners including every member and coach on the team to display his team spirit.

“Watching these girls have brought us a tremendous amount of pride, I can say that on behalf of all the parents that came to the games and cheered the team on,” said Ban. “It was exciting and extremely rewarding to watch them develop from the beginning of the season.”