No. 5 Hubs finish off Leopards

October 05, 2007|By CHRIS CARTER / Staff Correspondent

The North Hagerstown volleyball team closed strongly in its first two games against Smithsburg on Thursday night. After a shaky third game, the No. 5 Hubs recaptured that resilience to finish off the Leopards in four.

Kate Zimmer had 18 kills, Minta Lovell and Maria Bergan each had six and Hannah Boward had 36 assists to lead North to a 25-19, 25-19, 16-25, 25-17 victory.

"We probably played our most consistent all year in the first and second games," said North coach Megan Crawford. "We kind of had a letdown in the third game, but the girls came back out and finished it. We put the ball down when we needed to."

North (8-1) led by as many as nine points in the opening game before Smithsburg rallied to pull the score to 22-19. The Hubs scored the final three points - all Zimmer kills on assists from Boward - to secure the win.


The Hubs pushed through eight ties in the second game - the last at 18-18 - scoring seven of the last eight points.

"We went in spurts," said Smithsburg coach Rachel Bachtell. "We'd give up six or seven points in a row and fall behind. It's tough to do that against a good team like North."

Smithsburg (5-4) was on the better end of the spurts facing a sweep in the third game. The teams forged a 7-7 tie before the Leopards scored seven of nine for a 14-9 edge. The Hubs pulled the deficit to four points three times, but got no closer as the Leopards scored five of the last six points to clinch the game.

Sophomore Colleen Black had four of her six kills in the third game. Strengthening the youth movement for the Leopards was freshman Sara Rishell, who led the team with 13 kills and six blocks. Taylor Belella, also a freshman, had four aces.

"Offensively, we have the players in the front row that can finish, but we have to get it to them," Bachtell said. "We have to be able to get the ball to our targets."

Junior Valerie Smith did her best as she had a team-high 28 assists. But the Leopards had only five kills in losing the fourth game.

North broke a 9-9 tie by scoring six straight points on the serve of Karli Powers and its lead never dropped below four points. Reserve Rachel Amalfitano had two kills down the stretch as the Hubs maintained the momentum and clinched the game on an error by Smithsburg - its 40th of the match.

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