Click to Learn More
Milford Town Crier


Town Crier Publication Dates
Town Crier Newspaper Advertising Rates

Town Crier Publications

Promote Your Page Too

Sports Page


Sports Flash

Meredith Purtell is the new head coach for the Milford High School girl's volleyball team. Contributed photo


Purtell Takes the Reigns For
Girls Volleyball
Over the years, the name Linda Zacchilli has become synonymous with volleyball in Milford. The longtime coach is in multiple Halls of Fame and won 337 games, 13 league championships, and nine district titles. With that kind of a resume, it isn't surprising to know her successor feels just a little bit of pressure.
"I have big shoes to fill for sure," said Meredith Purtell, who was named the program's head coach in the off-season. "Luckily, Linda and I are friends and I know that I can call her for ideas or advice. I am really appreciative of that."
Purtell has had the ability to learn under Zacchilli over the past five seasons. She has been Milford's JV coach for four years before serving as the varsity assistant in 2011. Purtell played for MHS under then head coach Tammy Webber, graduating in 2001. She went on to play club volleyball at the University of Connecticut, and got involved in coaching youth programs after grad school. When she was hired by the Milford school district, she immediately joined the coaching ranks at MHS despite being a little unsure at first.
"I knew I wanted to get involved in the program because I wanted to have volleyball in my life, but I wasn't sure how I would do as a coach," she said. "Once I started, I liked it. Being around the game and working with the girls is the draw for me."
Purtell was known as a scrappy, defensive-minded player in her time at MHS. She says her best memories of playing at Milford involve hitting the floor or diving into the stands to keep the ball airborne. Her background in the game was helpful, but it was a challenge to learn the nuances of positions she was not as familiar with and impart that knowledge to her players.
"I definitely didn't know as much about hitting or certain skills that I didn't specialize in," she said. "I learned a lot from coaching with Linda and I also did my research and went to coaching clinics and just tried to learn from my peers."
Purtell will bring that knowledge to a young Scarlet Hawks team that graduated a dozen seniors from last year's squad that reached the post-season. "We are starting from scratch and that can be really exciting," she said. "Sometimes it can be harder when a number of players played for the previous coach. We have some fresh faces, but it will be tough because we will go back to basics a bit."
Volleyball can be a game of momentum, and Purtell knows that as well as anyone. In her final game at Milford, the Scarlet Hawks had a 2-0 lead against Natick and a lead in the third set before the tide turned and they ended up losing the match. Avoiding those runs by the opposition can take a scrapper's mentality, something the new head coach hopes to impart on her charges.
"I am still developing my approach, but I want the girls to have the appreciation for the sport and be ready to motivate themselves to put in the effort," she said. "I want to see who is going to step up."




[back]




Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

Click to Learn More

HOME | CALENDAR | NEWS ARCHIVE | EDITORIAL | PHOTO GALLERY | SPORTS | ADVERTISING | ABOUT US

Town Crier Publications, Inc. · 48 Mechanic Street, Upton, MA 01568
Phone: 508-529-7791 · E-mail: sales@towncrierpubs.com

  Copyright © 2019  Town Crier Publications, Inc.
 All rights reserved.  ·  Login

Website designed and hosted by Standing Stone Designs.