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Leopards get their warmup for Wildcats

October 02, 1998|By CURT HORNBECKER / Staff Correspondent

SMITHSBURG - Jim Klein is certainly no Knute Rockne.

"Tonight is the 50th win for Rachel (Bachtell), Carey (Brennan) and me," remarked Klein, the Smithsburg volleyball coach as he mentally recalculated the math. "I wish I would have thought of that. I might have used that for motivation."

--cont. from sports page--

Despite Smithsburg claiming its seventh straight win and keeping its record unblemished for the season with a 15-5, 15-6, 9-15, 15-2 win over Monocacy Valley Athletic League foe Middletown (3-3, 1-3) Thursday night, Klein would have preferred seeing his club play better, especially with cross-county rival Williamsport looming on the horizon Monday.

"We were a little lethargic tonight," said Klein. "We had a big win Monday, and we had the day off Tuesday. It's difficult to come back after that. We were not mentally prepared to play. I just hope that outcome doesn't carry us into next week."

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The Leopards (7-0, 4-0) waited until the fourth game to play its best volleyball of the night. Bachtell and Kelly Martin combined for nine service points to open Game 4, including three aces. Two Brennan kills then highlighted five Casey Nogle service points as Smithsburg led, 14-0. Luisa Lopez served for two points - including an ace - before Amber Biser iced it for the Leopards.

The beginning of the first game was much the same, as Smithsburg rolled to an 8-0 advantage and led 10-5 before Bachtell served the final five points behind a pair of Nogle kills.

While five of 24 service attempts missed the mark in Game 2, the Leopards still managed to pull out the victory. All but one of those five missed served came after Smithsburg scored at least one point. Freshman Jonelle Stouffer led the way with five straight points, and finished the match with a 100 percent service efficiency.

Klein emptied his bench to start the third game, but after the Knights opened an 11-6 advantage, the starters began returning to the floor. But it was too little, too late, as Amanda Kaufman and Becky O'Leary combined for nine service points with Trina Burhman securing the win.

Brennan tallied nine kills for the Leopards, with Bachtell adding 13 service points, while Martin finished with 27 assists.

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