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Young Hawks soar in sweep of Potomac State

September 09, 2008|By JACK HILL III / Staff Correspondent

Hagerstown Community College's young volleyball team seems to be quickly maturing.

The Hawks swept Potomac State College 25-16, 25-11, 25-21 at the HCC athletic complex Monday evening.

HCC, currently ranked No. 10 in the NJCAA Division II poll, improved its record to 6-4.

"In tonight's match, the girls had much more intensity and they seemed like they were a much happier team playing tonight," said HCC coach Beth Domenico, whose 11-player roster includes 10 freshmen. "I think we really had a frustrating opening tournament. Since then, we have really come together as a team."

Setter Tara Garver had 22 assists, 16 service points and three aces for HCC.

"We knew what we had to improve on and we worked on it," Garver said. "We had more talking on the court and we were playing together as a team. Those were the keys to our victory tonight. Everybody in their own way has a lot of potential. At this point, I think that we are improving with every practice and with every match. If we play like the way we played tonight, we can go far."

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Morena Ribeiro had eight kills for HCC, while Rebecca Morgan had six kills and five digs, Katie Koontz had six kills and two blocks and Julia Becker and Rachel Koehler each had three kills and two blocks for the Hawks.

The Hawks were flying high at the beginning of the first game. After HCC got the first point on a sideout, Garver came through with five straight service points to increase the advantage to 6-0.

"I was just trying to stay focused, keep it in and place the ball," Garver said. "I think our serving has improved in every way. We tried not to get down on mistakes."

HCC built its lead to 12-3 in the first game, but Potomac State (5-3) scored seven of the next eight points to narrow the gap to 13-10. The Hawks then outscored the Catamounts 12-6 for the rest of the game to get the win, which was sealed on a game-ending kill by Koontz.

"In the first game, we had a time where we let Potomac State get a run of points," Domenico said. "For the most part, I think we played very consistently. I am very happy with the way that we played tonight."

The Hawks gradually built a 19-6 lead during the second game and that paved the way to the victory, sealed by another game-ending kill by Koontz.

Potomac State controlled things for a while during the third game as Ashley Sallee-Robinson started off with five service points in a row, including three aces, to provide a 5-0 advantage. HCC cut into the lead, but Potomac State still led past the halfway point of the game at 15-14.

The Hawks then outscored the Catamounts 11-6 the rest of the way to win the game, highlighted by a match-ending kill by Mar'ke Cosley.

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