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Zimmer leads Hubs past Wildcats

October 04, 2006|by CHRIS CARTER / Staff Correspondent

There was a feeling during the North Hagerstown-Williamsport volleyball tilt Tuesday night that whichever team prevailed in Game 3 would win the match.

No. 2 North survived a late charge by the No. 3 Wildcats to hang on and win the intense third game, part of its 17-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-15 victory.

"That was the turning point in the match," said Hubs junior Kate Zimmer, who led the team with 16 kills and six blocks. "If we would have lost, we would have had to come back really strong because Williamsport has a very good team."

Zimmer was key in the "turning" game, serving six straight points to give North (8-1) a 20-15 lead. The Hubs' 6-foot-3 middle hitter had four kills and three blocks in the game.

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Williamsport (5-4) scored four straight points to close the gap to 20-19, and the teams traded points until the Hubs led, 24-23. The Wildcats needed a point to extend the game, but Lindsay Kneisley's dig of a Zimmer kill attempt fell between two Williamsport hitters to give North the win and a 2-1 advantage.

"Each point was crucial," said North coach Megan Crawford. "We were very aggressive and didn't let anything hit the floor. It was a big part of the match."

North trailed 12-11 in the fourth game before scoring 14 of the next 17 points to clinch the match. Jen Bowlus served seven points down the stretch to fuel the Hubs.

"It's always going to take a lot out of any team when you play that hard and come up that short (in the third game)," said Wildcats coach Emily Crabtree. "We just didn't have it after that."

Despite its troubles late in the match, Williamsport came out firing in the first game. The Wildcats never trailed in the opening game and were sharp in their attacks. Hailee Growden led the way with five kills and had 12 for the match - her best performance of the year, according to Crabtree. Jess Bennett added three kills as the Wildcats outscored North 11-6 to end the game.

"We came out a little flat and Williamsport played with a lot of intensity," Crawford said. "We could have given up, but we didn't and we started serving and receiving a lot better."

The Hubs showed the improvements and evened the match in the second game. Trailing 16-13, North scored nine of the next 10 points, helped by five Williamsport errors. The Wildcats had 12 errors in the game.

"We came out like we needed, but we just didn't keep it up. That's been our problem," Crabtree said.

Brooke Powell had 12 kills and Hannah Boward had 18 assists for the Hubs. Kierra Nelson added five blocks and three kills.

Bennett finished with nine kills and Brittany Horn had four blocks for Williamsport, which will have a chance to even the score with the Hubs on Oct. 17. Christine Barnes had 17 assists, while Kneisley added 11.

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