Sealed with a Kiss
Good Counsel defeats SMR volleyball
It was unreturnable kill from hitter Lauren Kiss that allowed visiting Good Counsel to capture a four-set victory over St. Mary’s Ryken in a Washington Catholic Athletic Conference volleyball match on Tuesday night.
Good Counsel took the opening two sets, 27-25 and 25-17 before SMR came back to take third 25-19 despite losing Brenna Goebel, one of their players, getting injured. Behind Kiss’ kill, the visitors from Montgomery County won the fourth 25-23 to take the match.
The loss snapped a fivematch winning streak for the Knights (12-6, 10-5 WCAC).
SMR head coach Tracey Jubeck said her team may have just been having an off night against a Falcons team it defeated in five sets on Sept. 20.
“I think the girls gave all they had being down three starters with injuries,” she said. “We had to try lineups that we had never practiced given the unexpected injuries and our girls fought hard in very close matches. They showed tremendous character when faced with that adversity. Unfortunately, we let Good Counsel get out ahead of us from the start and they played a very strong match behind a tremendous setter [Margaret Rosburg] who our defense had a hard time defending.”
Jubeck said her team is preparing for the last week and a half of the season.
“We’ll face tough competition including the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in our conference and then on to playoffs,” she said. “We still aspire to finish in the top four in our conference and then have a successful playoff run. This team has the ability to go all the way.”
The Knights will travel to Prince George’s County to face McNamara at 5:30 p.m. today, then will be back on the road Tuesday for a 5:30 p.m. match versus Holy Cross of Montgomery County.
Mindy McNamara led the Knights in Tuesday’s loss with 17 passes out of serve-receive and had 14 digs.
Mackenzie Loewe led with 14 serves and a 100 percent serve-efficiency rate. She also had 31 passes out of serve-receive and finished with 30 digs and four kills. Kenna Collins finished with 11 kills, while Goebel had eight kills. Alex Buscher added six kills and Kate Agate led with 38 assists.
Loewe said the team was happy about coming back and winning the third set.
“I think we found it within ourselves to win that one and I’m really proud of my teammates for doing that,” Loewe said. “I think towards the end of the game, we need to let go of the distractions; whether it’s injuries or some calls. We just need to find a way to play our game and play through.”
Loewe and Rosburg have remained friends through the years, beginning when the two participated on the same travel team.
Rosburg said she knew coming in that she was going to give respect to St. Mary’s Ryken.
“We knew it would be tough coming in because Ryken is a solid team,” Rosburg said. “It’s a crazy gym [ceiling], which is a lot of adversity to play against, but it forces you to play up. The passes need to be better and the sets need to be faster. I know that they’re going to challenge us. I know when Brenna went down, there’s always that, ‘Yeah, she’s their best player, but they’re going to now be playing for her.’ I think that team did a nice job of switching things up and playing for that teammate.”