Falmouth Volleyball Outlasts Lady Knights In 3-2 Win
By: Rich Maclone, October 11, 2013
With things starting to unravel on Wednesday night, Falmouth head coach Michelle Gregory leaned on one of her most reliable players to right the ship for the Clippers. FHS had opened up with back-to-back convincing victories over Sandwich, and were one point away from sweeping the match on two separate occasions in the third game only to see the Lady Knights pull off a comeback in the third and then rout the Clippers in the fourth, setting up a decisive fifth game to decide the match.
After the Clippers won the coin toss to take the serve in the fifth game, Gregory sent senior captain Holly Shanahan to the line to set the tone. The senior delivered, in a big way.
Shanahan served seven consecutive points for FHS, with a handful of aces in the mix, to help the Clippers open up the game, which was played to 15, by getting nearly halfway home to victory. The maroon and white cruised to win that set, and avoided a disastrous loss. The Clippers also got back to the .500 mark, at 6-6 on the year, with a 25-16, 25-11, 27-29, 14-25, 15-6 win over the Lady Knights.
“They really take the losses hard...we have to work on our mental toughness. This one nearly got away,” coach Gregory said. “It was very frustrating, but we have to find a way to get past that.”
Shanahan “brought it,” though, and helped FHS get over the hump. The senior finished with 13 aces in the match, several at the biggest moments, and also had eight digs. “She helped us get back on track. I was glad I put here on the line first,” the coach said.
FHS could seemingly do no wrong early on. With Marianna Moore (10 kills, 5 blocks) and Taylor Miller (9 kills) wreaking havoc on the front line, the Clippers pasted the Blue Knights in the first two games and were well on their way to an easy win.
Things got tight in the third game, with Sandwich rallying back from an early deficit. A pretty tip over the line for a point by Tiara Vaughn (11 digs, 6 aces), who had missed nearly a week with a back injury, put FHS a point away, at 25-24 in the third. Sandwich then scored a block to tie it up. Falmouth got back to match point with a pretty dig by Rachel Weaver that SHS could not return, but then the Knights tied it up with a kill and took the lead with an ace.
Moore saved the day with a great play at the net that the Knights misplayed to retie the score at 27, but the Clippers then gave a point back with a missed serve and lost the game when Sandwich scored the win with a nice tip play at the net. It then took the Clippers some time to recover as the Knights stole away the momentum and dominated the fourth game.
With the match on the line, though, FHS dug deep. Behind Shanahan’s superb serving, Falmouth regained its composure and secured a season sweep of the series with the Blue Knights.
Falmouth returns to action today with a match on the road at Plymouth North High School.