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South can't keep hands on an upset

October 22, 1998

South can't keep hands on an upset

North begins sharpening up in 4-game win

North vs. SouthBy CURT HORNBECKER / Staff Correspondent

photo: RICHARD T. MEAGHER / staff photographer




If Nicole Morgan is right, Wednesday night was special in more ways than one for the North Hagerstown volleyball team.

Not only did the Hubs defeat archrival South Hagerstown, 12-15, 15-10, 15-10, 15-12 to remain in position to claim the Monocacy Athletic League championship, but, according to Morgan, the team began playing as a unit after the first-game loss.

--cont. from sports page--

And it may have all hinged on a seldom-heard, but non-controversial call by the officials late in Game 2.

Nursing a 10-8 lead, the Rebels (5-8, 3-4) were called for a backside attack, and instead of a side-out for South, the Hubs (8-2, 4-1) pulled to within 10-9, and scored the next six points for the come-from-behind victory.

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"(The call) really helped us gain the momentum," said the North sophomore, who finished with 37 assists and 11 kills. "We knew then that we still had to stay focused, but I think tonight we jelled. We definitely came together as a team."

The Hubs opened a 6-0 lead in the third game behind six service points and two aces from Michele Grove, but South rebounded for eight unanswered points with Kari Belin and Laura Wishard serving four and three points respectively. But the Hubs scored the final nine points of the game for the win.

After the Rebels claimed a 3-1 lead to open Game 4, North rallied behind the serving of Jen Anderson and the net play of Erica Dattilio and Morgan to go up 8-4. The lead grew to 13-7 before Wishard served five straight points for South to close the margin to 13-12, but Dattilio served out for North with Carolyn Friton getting the kill to ice it.

"This is how it's been all year," said Hubs coach Tracy McKinsey, "back and forth, back and forth. I thought after the first game we hit the ball a lot better. We may not have gotten more kills, but we made fewer mistakes hitting the ball."

In the opener, it was South that came from behind for the win. After the Hubs rolled to a 12-6 advantage, Allison Wine served the final nine points, with Belin notching a pair of kills.

"Today it was mental errors," said South coach Brad Helman. "I feel confident we can handle a lot of teams physically, but mentally, we fell apart at critical times tonight."

Belin paced South with 29 kills, while Janice Harp contributed 25 assists. Dattilio finished with 18 kills, 16 assists and 18 service points to spark the Hubs.

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