Upland, Indiana is home to Taylor University, an NAIA school ranked the #1 college in the Midwest region. This private Christian college was founded in 1846, and has been carrying out a certain tradition for over two decades. The Trojans have a “Silent Night” game where they pack the gym, dress up, and then… pandemonium. The building erupts when they score the 10th point and they end the game by singing “Silent Night.”
The Greenville University women’s volleyball team recently had their senior night and celebrated in the same fashion. They honored their two seniors Maci Bonacorsi and Allyson Grabowski. The gym was silent until our Panthers scored the twelfth point, in honor of Allyson and the number she wore. Once we scored our twelfth point, fans, players, coaches, family, and even the other team erupted with confetti, tears, and genuine happiness as all celebrated Allyson.
In attendance were several players from GU’s football team helping to remember her as they held up their helmets with the number twelve on the side. This night was a symbol of a community coming together to commemorate the passing of someone embraced by this school.
During an interview with senior Maci Bonacorsi, she said she “doesn’t even know how to describe it,” referring to her senior night. “I was speechless because it couldn’t have gone any better. There were so many emotions for me. I’m not an emotional person, but that night Ski meant the world to me. It was a special moment.”
Maci enjoys the family, team aspect, and friendships built from being apart of a team. Bonacorsi stated, “I enjoy being a part of the family every day and living life with the girls! They are sisters to me.” For those that do not know, Maci is one of three team captains on the women’s volleyball team. During her time at GU, the greatest lesson she has learned is “becoming the best leader I can be and spreading the love of the Lord to everyone.” Sports always hold a special place in every athlete’s heart; they help many to grow as people and teach life-long lessons. Maci says, “Sports have meant a lot to me because I’ve been an athlete my whole life. I’ve met great people throughout my years and I couldn’t imagine my life without being an athlete.”
Mia Bonacarsi, Maci’s sister, is a freshman at Greenville. Mia explains sharing the court with her older sister. “This has been something so special. I never knew that it would have impacted me as much as it has.” When she first found out she would be sharing the same hardwood with her sister, she explained, “I was a little anxious at first…but we would both say that it was the best experience to be playing with each other.”
Mia also acknowledged her sister’s leadership abilities by saying, “She is such an amazing captain. She puts everyone before herself, and always makes sure everyone is okay.” Associate head women’s coach and senior woman administrator at Greenville University Hayle Gibson also praises Bonacorsi’s leadership. Coach Gibson says, “Maci is one of the most incredible examples of a servant leader that we have seen. Her genuine humility and compassion are one of the most inspiring things about Maci.” One of the things the coaches ask of their athletes is to leave the program better than they found it so they can feel proud once they leave. According to Coach Gibson, “Maci surpassed all of our expectations. GU volleyball will forever be better because of Maci’s contributions.”
After college, Maci plans on working for her parents as a graphic designer at jBLOOM, a jewelry store located in St Peters, Missouri.
The SLIAC tournament is set for November 9th in H.J. Long gymnasium. The season is coming to a close, so make sure you get out to a game!
Media by Hannah Krukewitt.