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Leopards pay back Rebels

September 19, 2008|By Jack Hill III

SMITHSBURG - This year's motto for the Smithsburg volleyball team is: It's amazing how much can be accomplished if no one cares who gets the credit.

The Leopards received a wide variety of contributions as they defeated South Hagerstown 25-21, 17-25, 25-22, 25-17 on Thursday night.

"Tonight was a total team effort," Smithsburg coach Rachel Brashear said. "Throughout the match, I had girls playing in positions that they normally don't play in, and they responded well. Everyone was able to contribute tonight. We're a young team. We're learning how to win and we are gaining confidence with each match that we play."

Junior middle hitter Colleen Black had 14 kills and five blocks for the Leopards.

"I thought I did good at the net," Black said. "I put the ball where it was supposed to be."

Black said Smithsburg showed a lot of improvement since getting swept at South just a week ago.

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"I think we did good overall," Black said. "We fixed a lot of mistakes that we had the last time that we played them. I think the key to the win tonight was that we did a much better job with our serve receiving. We got the ball on target. I think we're going to be a good team. We're going to be a force in the MVAL (Antietam)."

A couple of sophomores shined for Smithsburg (4-1). Setter Taylor Belella had 39 assists and hitter Sara Rishell added 12 kills and eight blocks.

Valerie Smith had 18 assists and Mallory Petty added 13 service points for the Leopards. Mollie Kieffer had 12 digs, while Nikki Siefert added nine kills and eight service points.

South (2-3) had its share of good performances. Desiree Giffin had 15 service points and eight digs, Sarah Burgan had 15 assists, Rebecca Pearl had eight blocks and seven kills, Megan Vance had eight service points and Kara Henson added four kills.

"Smithsburg outplayed us tonight," South coach Chuck Weaver said. "That's the bottom line."

After the teams split the first two games, the score was tied at 22 in Game 3 when the Leopards got three straight service points from Kieffer and a game-ending kill by Allyn Saling.

Smithsburg raced out to a 12-4 lead in Game 4 before South sliced the lead down to 14-10. The Leopards outscored the Rebels 11-7 from there to seal the match.

Smithsburg also won the JV match, 21-25, 25-23, 15-12.

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