SALISBURY, Md. – The York College volleyball team suffered a gut-wrenching 3-2 loss to Salisbury in a pressure-packed, heart-pounding Capital Athletic Conference tilt Wednesday evening. The Spartans, who battled back from two-games down to force a fifth set, fall to 25-5 and 5-3 in the CAC while the Sea Gulls improve to 19-10 and 6-2 in league play.
After a slow start that permeated throughout the first two games, falling 25-20 and 27-25, the Green and White snagged the game three win 27-25. Down 20-17 in that third set, Spartan head coach Sue DuMars called a timeout to settle her squad. That timeout proved fruitful as the York side responded with a 4-1 run to take the lead at 22-21. York took the lead on a huge block that landed just inside the Sea Gull back line. Following several more back-and-forth points, the Green and White finally came out on the better end of the result with the two-point triumph.
Game four, which the Spartans would eventually take 25-23, began exceptionally well for the York squad. On the first point, a Cortni Rentzel set for the Spartans proved too tall for middle hitter Alishia Waltermyer. An alert Heather Bucher came sliding in and bumped the ball from right near the net over to Salisbury's side. York won the point shortly after Bucher's incredible effort.
Later on in the frame, York found themselves down 18-16 and were forced to come back yet again. Another DuMars timeout worked again, as the Spartans took a 20-18 lead after the short break.
Salisbury made the rest of the set more than interesting though, regaining the advantage at 23-21. DuMars again utilized a timeout to rally the Spartans as York would take the next four points to secure the win. Right after the timeout however, Salisbury nearly took a 24-21 advantage. That opportunity though was thwarted by one of the best plays of the evening. Ashley Rineman, the Spartans' exceptionally talented sophomore libero, came up with a huge dig near the short corner of the Spartans side of the court. Rineman came out of nowhere to keep the ball alive as York eventually won the point and later the game. Overall, York's defensive work in the fourth set was exceptional both at the net and the back line allowing the Spartans to eventually take the second game.
Forcing a fifth set, the Spartan had already spent significant energy. Despite that, York did look as if they had plenty left in the tank as they opened up a 4-1 lead to begin the frame.
That advantage did not last long though as the ever-battling Sea Gulls went on a 7-3 run to capture an 8-7 lead. York tied the match at 10-10 but just a few points later Salisbury had regained a 12-11 edge.
DuMars called another timeout, a strategy that had worked well for the Spartans throughout the match, but the ensuing points failed to bring the results the other timeouts had brought. Down 14-12, DuMars called her final timeout of the match but this one went begging as well. Salisbury won the next point to post the tight 3-2 conference triumph.
For the match, Bucher and Alysse Beshore led the Spartan with 12 kills each. Bucher totaled 11 digs and a trio of block assists while Beshore also added four digs and four block assists. Jessica Moyer and Waltermyer each posted 10 kills.
Setter Rentzel distributed 46 assists while collecting 19 digs. Rineman picked up a game-high 37 digs as she continues to make her case for the best defensive player, if not overall player, in the CAC.
Carly Todd led the Sea Gull offense with 16 kills on 48 attempts while Jenna Shay recorded 14 kills. Both of the left-handed hitters gave the Spartan defense fits throughout the five-set tilt.
Melissa Stansbury totaled 25 digs to lead her squad while Chelsea Glowacki posted one block solo and nine block assists.
The Spartan loss results in the Green and White falling to fifth in the CAC standings. As the #5 seed heading into the CAC Tournament, York will travel to St. Mary's on Tuesday, November 2, for the first round tilt.
Prior to that match however, the Spartans head to nearby Goucher on Friday, October 29. York concludes the 2010 regular season that evening with a 7:00 pm non-conference tilt against the Gophers.
Photo: Ashley Rineman prepares to serve on Wednesday evening in York's CAC tilt at Salisbury