Nov 04, 2011 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Head coach Jon DeHay watched as his Cicero-North Syracuse girls volleyball team dropped the third set of Thursday night’s Section III Class AA semifinal at Fayetteville-Manlius and had to wonder if an old, familiar tale was repeating itself.
Each of the last four years, the Northstars had reached the semifinal round, only to be stopped, something made more painful by the fact that CNS annually hosts the sectional finals and could only watch as a spectator.
This time, though, the no. 3 seed Northstars would turn it around, using its power and poise to rally past the Hornets in five sets and advance to next Wednesday’s title match in its home gym.
Normally, when a match like this goes all five sets, it features close competition for a good portion of the night. However, that didn’t transpire here, as the team that won the first point of each set went on to win on all five occasions.
Looking to avenge a five-set defeat to F-M on Oct. 11, the Northstars gained the first four points of the match. Though the Hornets closed within 11-9, CNS regained a margin as large as seven points before claiming the opening set 25-19.
F-M reversed the trend, never trailing in the second set as, this time, CNS was within 11-9 before the Hornets gradually pulled away in a 25-17 decision. That even trade was followed by a one-sided third set where F-M blitzed the Northstars, leading by as much as 15 points in a 25-12 romp.
Once that was done, said DeHay, he implored his players to “do what we do best. They had the talent. It’s just a matter of showing it.”
Sure enough, in the fourth set CNS, bolstered by lots of front-line power, notched the first four points, just as in the first set, and had the margin to double digits before closing with a 6-1 push to stretch it to 25-10, and the match went to the final set.
Once there, CNS again would not trail after getting the first three points. Once ahead 14-8 and 16-10, the Northstars saw F-M whittle the margin to a single point, 21-20, before Alexis Rios served it into the net. The Hornets never got closer as CNS won the match 25-22.
On the back line, Lindsey Silfer had 18 assists, five blocks, five digs and three kills, while Amy Van Hoven earned 16 assists, seven kills and five digs. Adrianna Patzer had a team-best 10 kills, with Carly Rebecchi adding nine kills and libero Emily Becker recording 10 digs.
CNS started out as the no. 3 seed, hosting no. 6 seed Central Square in last Tuesday’s AA quarterfinal and sweeping past the Red Hawks 25-9, 25-8, 25-20.
Becker, recording five aces, set the tone for her teammates as Van Hoven and Silfer led the Northstars in kills and assists. Both of them had six kills as Silfer put up 14 assists and Van Hoven added nine assists, plus four digs. Patzer, Rebecchi, Cara Gannett and Jenna Tartaro each recorded three kills, with Patzer adding three blocks.
Liverpool, as the no. 5 seed, saw its season end in the same quarterfinal round, as no. 4 seed Oswego eliminated the Warriors in four sets.
The Buccaneers dominated each of the first two sets, 25-13 and 25-16. Liverpool did take the third set 25-15 and nearly pushed the match to the limit, but Oswego held on, 26-24, in the fourth set.
Dorothy Rosekrans finished with nine kills, while Stephanie Mumpton had six kills. Meghan Stonebarger had 21 assists and Rachel Ruggaber contributed seven digs. Cassi McCrum had three aces. Alexa Healy led Oswego with 36 assists, feeding to a front line where Cydney Ward (13 kills), Kelsey Ross (nine kills) and Cortnie Purce (eight kills) all contributed.
On Wednesday night, the CNS boys volleyball season ended as, in the AA semifinals, it lost a five-set battle to no. 2 seed Baldwinsville.
Swept three times by the Bees in the regular season, the Northstars appeared to be gaining revenge when it dominated the first set 25-14 and, after B’ville took the second set 25-16, tore through the third set 25-18.
But that 2-1 lead did not last, as B’ville squeaked out the fourth set 25-23 and also claimed the final set 25-21. All this came despite Billy Werksman earning 21 kills, four aces and four digs as Justin Collins gained 36 assists.
Joel Brousseau, with seven kills, and Alex Brodhead, with six kills, offered front-line support. Ryan Shelton (40 assists) and Ryan Zbikowski (17 kills) led B’ville’s effort.