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Devils serve up sweep

October 18, 2005|by CHRIS CARTER /Staff Correspondent

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Greencastle volleyball coach Vicki Ritchey was dissatisfied with her team's offense in Monday night's Mid-Penn nondivision match against Waynesboro.

Fortunately for Ritchey, the Blue Devils had a good night at the service line to offset their offensive woes and committed fewer errors than the young Maidens to notch a 25-6, 25-21, 25-21 sweep.

"We made too many mistakes on offense. That's where we struggled," Ritchey said. "Our service game didn't let us down ... our offense did."

Thanks to a near-perfect service performance in the opener by the Blue Devils (14-2), the offensive flaws were not exposed until the second game.

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"We just completely served them off the court in the first game," Ritchey said. "That allowed other parts of our game to click."

Mandi Mentzer guided the Blue Devils in the opener, serving a nine-point run featuring three aces that put the Maidens in a 13-1 hole they couldn't climb out of. The Blue Devils committed only three service errors during the match.

"I think it's best to just forget about that first game," Waynesboro coach Lori Brooks said.

The Maidens did - and they were a formidable opponent in the final two games. Waynesboro hovered within five to eight points before making late charges in both.

"I think our girls had a preconceived thought that Waynesboro wasn't a very good team based on their record," Ritchey said. "It was definitely a wake-up call for them in the last two games that Waynesboro needs to be taken seriously."

The Maidens trailed 23-15 in the second game before reeling off the next five points to close to within 23-20. In the third game, Greencastle held a 24-17 lead and was serving for game point before Waynesboro scored four straight, prompting Ritchey to call a timeout.

"At that point we had made so many mistakes that nobody wanted to make another one," Ritchey said. "(In the timeout) I told them that you have to give everything and not worry about making the mistake."

On the ensuing play, the Blue Devils attacked the ball, forcing the Maidens to knock the ball out of bounds, ending the threat and sealing the match.

"This is the kind of thing we've been doing all year. We'll get down by about six or seven, then start making plays at the end of the game," Brooks said. "We need to play like that early in games.

Jill Lininger led the Maidens with 18 digs, while Paige Tanner added 13. Gillian Hollen had a team-high six blocks to go with four kills, while Leslie McKenzie had 16 assists.

Whitney Meyers led Greencastle with seven kills and seven blocks. Mentzer and Michelle Negley each had 13 digs and Jade Dunhour had 16 assists.

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