Sailors serve up slice of re­venge with vic­tory

Baltimore Sun - - VARSITY - By Craig Clary cclary@balt­sun.com twit­ter.com/CraigClary

Mount de Sales avenged its only loss of the sea­son on Fri­day night when the vis­it­ing No. 6 ranked Sailors de­feated Mary­vale, 25-22, 20-25, 25-17, 25-19 in vol­ley­ball ac­tion.

Sopho­more set­ter Kelsey Miller was stel­lar on the ser­vice line for the Sailors (11-1) with a match-high eight aces and she spread the hit­ting wealth to the con­sis­tent trio of out­side hit­ters Mary Grace Goyena (18 kills) and Abby Kuhn (eight kills) and mid­dle hit­ter Chid­inma Onuk­wugha (13 kills).

“Once we start get­ting ahead I like to mix it up,” said Miller, who had some ex­tra adren­a­line flow­ing for this match. “This team beat us on our home­com­ing day, so I feel like we had a drive to get them.”

Keep­ing ev­ery­body in­volved was just what Mount de Sales coach Pat Day­ton ex­pected.

“That’s been the plan all year. Ev­ery­body works hard and with the peo­ple I have in the front row we trust ev­ery­body with ball, I think that’s what sets us apart,” Day­ton said. “We don’t rely on just one player. We try to get ev­ery­one in­volved.”

Slow­ing down Mary­vale’s top hit­ter Claire Neff was an­other goal for the coach.

“We knew we had to get our de­fen­sive digs against their good hit­ter, Claire,” he said. “She was go­ing to get her kills, but we just had to get a cou­ple stops.”

Neff, a ju­nior, fin­ished with 18 kills and fresh­man Caitlin Shaf­frey added five for the Lions.

“She (Clare) is amaz­ing and I don’t think a lot of peo­ple give her enough credit,” Mary­vale coach Missy Lit­tle said.

Neff had four kills in the first two sets and seven in the fourth.

Serv­ing and pass­ing was the dif­fer­ence in the first set as Mary­vale (12-4) had five missed serves and the Sailors had four aces and forced serve re­ceive er­rors.

“They played re­ally well, but tonight we had too many missed serves and we just lost our fo­cus and we weren’t pass­ing as well as we could have been pass­ing,”Lit­tle said.

Mary­vale did rally from a 21-16 deficit to take a 22-21 lead in the first set on an ace by set­ter Sophia Sav­ick.

Sav­ick had two aces and Neff had two kills dur­ing the run that ended with a kill by Goyena that tied the score 22-all.

With Malina Bei­der­man on the ser­vice line, the Sailors won the next three points and the set.

The first came on a serve-re­ceive er­ror, Onuk­wugha’s block se­cured the next point and a Mary­vale hit­ting er­ror ended the set.

The Lions ral­lied in the sec­ond set, thanks to a strong start with Shaf­fey on the ser­vice line.

They won the first five points and built a 12-7 lead be­fore a kill from Onuk­wugha started a 4-point run.

Kuhn’ s kill and a pair of aces, on danc­ing floaters by Miller ,cut it to 12-11.

A tip by Onuk­wugha tied the set at 19-19, but a ser­vice er­ror gave the Lions the side out and they closed the match with five of the fi­nal six points. Shaf­frey had two kills dur­ing the run. Be­hind a pair of aces from Kayla Koch, the Lions raced to an 8-3 lead in the third set, but the Sailors ral­lied be­hind the serv­ing of Miller who was on the line for seven straight points when she de­liv­ered three aces when the Sailors took a 13-9 lead.

Mary­vale never got closer than two points the rest of the way.

Grace Jen­nings started serv­ing in the fi­nal set and when she gave up the ball the Sailors led 7-0.

The Lions pulled within three points, 20-17, on a kill by Neff, but the Sailors ended it with five of the next seven points with Goyena get­ting a pair of aces dur­ing the run.

The match ended with Onuk­wugha slid­ing be­hind Miller for a back set from the out­side.

“I told Chid­inma, since it was 24-18, let’s end it on a slide,” Miller said.

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