November 2, 2013

Volleyball Campaign Closes with a Pair of 3-1 Losses

YORK Pa.  York  (16-15) fell to Salisbury (27-4) in their first match of the day.  Every game was a tough battle but the Seagulls prevailed 3-1.

The Spartans wore blue shirts before the match for former volleyball star Heather Bucher.  Bucher '12, was in a serious car accident over the summer.  The Spartans sold t-shirts and asked for donations, made out to head coach Sue Dumars, to help cover the medical costs.

The first set fixed the tone for the match, as the Spartans and Sea Gulls battled for every point.   The Spartans fed off of Katherine Graziano (Elkridge, Md. / Archbishop Spalding) and her service power in the early goings of the set.  The first set had an early run by the fired up Spartans, but the stayed close and featured 13 lead changes. Katie Huston (Ellicott City, Md. / Mount Hebron) was able to help York close out the first set with a kill for the win.  The Spartans won set one with a 25-23 score.

The second set opened with a 4-0 run led by Kristin Martinak (Hanover, Pa. / South Western) and great team effort.  Salisbury battled back to tie the score at six, and the Seagulls never looked back despite efforts from Brittany Hicks (Dover, Pa. / York Catholic).  Salisbury ended up taking the second set 25-20.

York looked to battle back in set three with some exceptional kills by Ijeoma Igwe (Windsor Mill, Md. / Seton Keough).  Igwe had a great set with timely attacks to keep the Spartans battling throughout.  Salisbury surged out to a 20-13 lead, but York closed with some strong play and momentum.  The Spartans fell 25-22 in set three, but seemed to be riding a wave of momentum to battle in the fourth.

The fourth set opened with an 8-3 run by York that featured some big momentum and loud cheers.  Amanda Mackey (Whiteford, Md. / North Harford) set up York with a big block and followed the block with a huge kill.  The game featured plenty of back and forth action with Cassie Miller (Odenton, Md. / Arundel) scooping some key digs.  Then the set was tied up at 12, and the Spartans and Seagulls battled back and forth with 6 tied scores. With the Spartans facing a 22-19 deficit, York battled behind Hicks and Mackey to close the match to within one.  The Spartans just missed on a dig and ended up dropping the fourth set 25-23.

York, who honored former volleyball star, Heather Bucher, had one of their best matches despite the loss.  Hicks and Igwe led the team with 11 kills each.  Martinak contributed two aces through the four sets, while Graziano and Miller combined for 35 digs.  The team finished the match with 9 blocks.

Following the game the Spartans had to face a coin toss for a spot in the CAC tournament, and the cruel flip forced York out of the tournament. The Spartans return to action at 5 p.m. in Wolf Gymnasium for their final match of the year.

The Spartans had their second match of the day against Franklin and Marshall (24-5).  Despite another well-fought game, York fell 3-1 in four sets.

The first set was an absolute classic with tons of battles.  Igwe led the team with her kills.  Martinak provided a crucial service ace to tie the score at 24 and then York traded points with F&M until the Diplomats were able to surge ahead and seize a 29-27 victory. 

The second set featured a bevy of Hicks kills that kept York battling.  The game opened with a Huston and Allison Dorsey (Elkridge, Md. / Long Reach) combined for a huge block.  The set featured nine lead changes and the Spartans were ended up dropping the set 25-21.

Set three had 12 lead changes and had the fans on the edges of their seats. Huston secured a crucial kill at 15 all, to give the Spartans a lead and some momentum. York rode the back of Dorsey who dominated the net and was able to nab set three 25-22.

The fourth set showed Franklin and Marshall's power as the Spartans failed to ever gain a lead or tie.  The Diplomats won 25-12 to close out the match.

In the second game of the day Igwe lead the team with 13 kills in 33 attempts.  Martinak was able to grab two more aces for the day.  Graziano filled the defensive stats with her 21 digs. 

Overall it was huge improvement for the Spartans over their 2012-13 campaign by almost doubling their win total and working to be a very competitive team.  The women will look to the offseason to improve their craft and come back next season even better.  With only two seniors, Hicks and Mackey, DuMars should be excited about the improvements of her team, and the potential for next year.  Thank you to all of the Spartan fans for following this year.