October 19, 2011

Spartans Hold off Bobcats in Key CAC Victory

YORK, PA – The York College volleyball squad picked up a must-have 3-2 Capital Athletic Conference victory over the visiting Frostburg State University Bobcats on Wednesday night in Wolf Gym. The Spartans improve to 12-13 overall and 3-4 in the CAC while the defending CAC champion Bobcats fall to 14-16 overall and 4-2 in the league.

The game scores were 25-18, 24-26, 25-19, 26-28, 15-10.

In game one, the Spartans trailed 9-8 before a Melissa Patterson kill kick started a 9-0 run, giving York a 17-9 lead. Junior Ashley Rineman served the Spartans during their spurt while freshman Katie Huston contributed two kills and a solo block. The Bobcats drew to within five at 23-18 but a Huston combo block with Dani Mastroieni closed out the game in favor of the hosts, 25-18.

Game two was a thriller from the start. The set featured 15 ties and seven lead changes while neither team had more than a two point advantage at any time during the set. The Spartans trailed 19-17 only to have Patterson drive home a pair of kills to draw York even at 19. The Spartans eventually took a 22-20 lead and looked poised to take the 2-0 lead. However, Frostburg got a kill from Andrea Armstrong and a Spartan attack error to tie the set at 22. The teams alternated four points and with the set tied at 24, Nicole Absher drove home a kill followed by a combo block from Jessica Hair and Sabrina Winterling as the Bobcats squared the match at one set each.

The third set saw the guests take an early lead only to have the Spartans come storming back. With the set tied at five, senior Heather Bucher drilled a service ace that started a quick 3-0 run for York. That run gave the Spartans a lead they would not relinquish the remainder of the set. York slowly increased its lead to as many as six as the hosts took the 2-1 lead. Senior Julie Coombs was big in the set as she came off the bench to spark the Spartan offense with four kills.

Game four was a classic. The Spartans trailed early by six, a lead the Bobcats held four different times including the last time at 10-4. The Green and White picked up their play and started chipping away at the lead and finally tied the set at 17 on a Huston kill. York then scored seven of the next nine points as they led 24-19. With York needing just one point to close out the match, the Bobcats staved off elimination and scored five straight to tie the set at 24. York took a 25-24 lead on a Patterson kill but Winterling responded with back-to-back kills as FSU took a 26-25 advantage. Bucher knotted the set for a seventh time with a kill but Winterling registered another kill and Victoria Veirs and Hair combined on a block to close out the set, keeping the Bobcats alive in the match.

The fifth and deciding set did not lack for drama as Frostburg State jumped out to a 5-2 lead as the guests built off the momentum of their game-four phoenix. Bucher saved the Spartans with a huge kill after a York timeout. That kill seemed to inject life into the Spartans as they scored eight of the next 11 points to take a 10-8 lead in the 15-point set. York extended the lead to 14-9 before a Mastroieni kill ended the match for the Spartans.

The Green and White received a number of stellar performances in the win. Patterson led the Spartans with a career-high 16 kills as she hit a blistering .387 for the match. She also had one solo block and four block assists. Bucher chipped in with 14 kills, five assists, nine digs, and three block assists while Rineman was outstanding defensively with a team-high 30 digs as she continually kept the Spartans in points. Rineman also had four service aces and two assists for York. Senior Cortni Rentzel handed out 57 assists while she also had 11 digs and three service aces. Mastroieni and Coombs each added 10 kills for the Spartans.

Winterling led the Bobcats with 17 kills as she hit .324 for the match. Armstrong contributed 10 kills and 23 digs while Maddie White led the Bobcat defense with 32 digs. Kyle Carrington distributed 45 assists while she also had seven kills, eight digs and a block assist.

York finished the match with a season-high 67 kills as they hit .193 as a team.

The Spartans return to conference play on Friday night as they travel to Wesley College to face the Wolverines in a CAC contest. Game time from Dover is scheduled for 7:00 pm.

Melissa Patterson photo courtesy of Theresa Dark – Athletic Communications Student Photographer