Last night, Tuesday, Sept. 21st, College Park volleyball went head to head with Grand Oaks for their first district game at home. The game was anticipated to be close as both teams held impressive records – CP varsity was 17-3 overall going into the game, with Grand Oaks varsity 21-10 overall.
Grand Oaks started the game off strong, but College Park matched their energy, neither team letting the ball hit the ground. Within the first set, it was clear that both teams would alternate with the lead making it tough to take the first match by two points. However, the Cavs pulled ahead, winning the first set 31-29.
By the second set, key players were standing out. The libero, senior Alexis Mcdaniel, has a big responsibility with her position, yet she filled the shoes perfectly with aggressive digs, clean passes, and prominent leadership on the court. Despite the first victory, the Cavs started the second set down 7-2. However, the Cavs quickly wore out the Grizzlies with senior Paige Palmer’s hard-to-return serves and junior Peyton Sedlacek’s spikes. The Cavs rapidly caught up, tying the score 16-16 mid-set, continuing the series of lead changes. This fired up the Grizzlies, and they tied the score again at 24, but it was too late; CP took the second set 26-24.
Though both teams showed the spirit to fight until the end, the Cavs possessed chemistry the Grizzlies did not. There was no confusion on the Cavs’ side of the net concerning who was going for the ball. CP was on point with every play, performing as one. Grand Oaks seemed to lack such communication, revealing many holes on their side of the court where the ball often slipped through.
In the middle of the third set, the Grizzlies were still fighting for a 4th and 5th set to prove themselves, taking the lead 9-12. However, Palmer and Sedlacek, with the aid of controlled, persistent sets from senior Paige Bernstein, continued to find the holes in Grand Oaks Defense, hitting many more aces. The Grizzlies soon gave away their lead with several out-of-bound hits. Senior Cassidy Copeland took advantage of the edge, scoring an impressive point that cut at the lead. Senior Don’yah Cosie then tied the third set 23-23; her teammates continued the advancement allowing her to hit the winning spike for a Cav victory 25-23.
If you missed this exciting match-up, the Grizzlies and Cavaliers will meet again for an away conference match at Grand Oaks on Fri., Oct. 8th. In the meantime, the Cavaliers second district match will be at home this Fri., Sept. 22nd.