Seymour downs St. Joseph
SEYMOUR — It had the feel of a championship match, only it was the quarterfinals.
Defending Class M state champion St. Joseph was locked in a match with Seymour that could’ve lasted all night if it was to be decided in several more games. Players were fighting for just about every point and the momentum changes were dramatic and palpable.
When the dust settled, though, a top-seeded and relentless Seymour side emerged victorious over the gritty eighth-seeded Cadets 3-2 in the CIAC girls volleyball Class M state quarterfinals on Friday night in front of a raucous crowd at Seymour High.
“They played great, they really, really did,” Seymour head coach Cathy Federowicz said of her players.
“They played a great team and they knew the only way they were going to come out a winner is if they put it all together and that’s what they did. We had to keep hitting on them in order to keep them on defense because they (St. Joseph) have some great hitters, too.
“It was one of the best matches I’ve seen in a long time.”
Behind the play of their two big hitters, Faith Rousseau and Kolby Sirowich (44 kills combined), the Wildcats came through despite falling behind 2-1 in the match.
In the first, Seymour grabbed an early lead before slowly pulling away. The tide turned on the strength of the serving of setter Alyssa Cosciello (39 assists) along with strong play at the net from Rousseau to earn a 25-20 win.
“Everyone just did a great job,” Cosciello said. “We made great passes, good sets and great hits and overall it was a great game. We started to get down (after falling behind) on ourselves a little bit but we ended up bringing the energy back up and we knew we could come back.”
St. Joseph responded by taking the next two sets, 25-21 and 25-19. The Cadets took a 17-16 lead in the second and slowly pulled away, and in the third St. Joe’s never trailed and was aided by the serving of Kaitlyn Paige along with several kills by Elena Ball and Lily Mattison.
“It’s just a couple of little things either way and the momentum shifts were huge,” St. Joseph coach Jeff Babineau said. “Both volleyball teams were playing phenomenal and kids were laying out all over the floor. It’s just a matter of one tip here or there that changed the game.”
Not wanting their season to end on their home court the Wildcats responded with a dominant fourthgame victory, going ahead 8-7 and never looking back and in the fifth, Seymour went up 4-3 and even though St. Joe’s tried to hang in there, trailing 8-6 at one point, the Wildcats slowly chipped away and Rousseau put down the game point.
“It felt really good to know we had finally beat them because we work so hard as a team together,” she said. “We know what it feels like to lose (a loss to Kennedy in the NVL final) and we don’t want to have that feeling again.” 3 2
PLAYER OF THE MATCH
Faith Rousseau, Seymour — The junior finished with 28 kills to lead