couldn’t get into a rhythm. Our servereceive broke down a couple times, and if you don’t have a good first contact on the ball it’s hard to generate your offense. That first contact drives the play, so I think our serving hurts us and our serve-receive hurt us.”
Game 3 was equally as competitive as the second game. The Lions took the largest lead, 10-6, on a bump return into an open spot by Alyssa Sofinowski. That scoring gap closed quickly with only a one- or two-point differential the rest of the game. Kylie Tulowitsky scored with back-to-back winners to put Queen Anne’s ahead 21-20. That lead grew to 23-20 as Aryelle Miles put down a return at the net and Sofinowski served an ace. The game ended on the longest rally of the evening, a crowd-thrilling show of athleticism by both teams that ended with Stallings sending the ball into an open space for the home team’s lone victory.
“Sometimes we got a little tired. We didn’t play our spots and we allowed the team to keep climbing back into the game,” Hopkins said. “We were not playing our defensive spot and we were not playing till the whistle. Sometimes we were thinking the ball was dead, and then we would give up, and then the ball would come right back at us.”
Queen Anne’s kept its momentum briefly in Game 4 and took a 4-2 lead as the Bucs looked unnerved. But they rebounded, and a 12-3 run, which included a five-point serving streak by Sonneveldt, put them comfortably ahead the rest of the way.
“We came into this game very stressed but very confident though,” Hanks said. “I’m very proud of the way we played. We came into the game knowing what we wanted to do — one pass up, hit it over the net, just kill every ball we hit.”
In succession, a hitting error, a failure to return serve, a carry violation, and another hitting error by the Lions helped give Kent Island a 13-7 lead in the final game. Golembeski and Markya Lovett combined for a block to make it 14-7. Blum later closed the game with her jump serve for two points. The Lions bumped the serve-receive too close to the net and couldn’t send the ball back for the first point and Blum sent an ace in front of Queen Anne’s back line to end it.
“Their libero had a fantastic match,” Betts said. “She was all over the court. I think Kent Island moves very well. They’re quick, which is definitely a plus on defense. We’ll see them again.”
Taylor Walls had 10 kills and Tisher had eight for the Lions. Sofinowski had 11 digs and Caitlin Pfeiffer and Miles each has 10. Stallings provided 21 assists.
“It was very competitive. It pushed us to our limit,” Hopkins said. “They forced us to play our best game. I think this was the best game we played all year.”
GIRLS’ SOCCER (3-2, 3-0). Claire Schultz added a pair of assists, and Lily Dixon and Alyssa Orlinski had one assist apiece. Goalies Madi Banks and Cara Cunane split the goalie duties and did not have to make a save.
WORTON — Riley Napier had five goals and Abby Blanchard scored twice to fuel the Lions (5-1, 2-1).
Megan Majchrzak (assist) and Jessica Wright each scored a goal, and Shannon Donovan and Ryleigh Jordan had one assist apiece for Queen Anne’s County.
Follow me on Twitter @csknauss / email me at firstname.lastname@example.org