Blazers dominate small Rockville team, bringing record to 5-0
NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM—
An aggressive Blair coed volleyball team swiftly defeated a much smaller Rockville High School team 15-1, 15-5 in one of the team's easiest matches of the season.
After jumping to a 3-1 start in the first game, the Blazers (5-0) went on a 12-point run to end the game, which featured four ace serves by senior Tracy Lin and consistent setting by senior co-captain Jennifer Alyono. "We started off a little bad, but we got back into it quickly," said senior co-captain Lan Le.
The Rockville team failed to attack the ball, often sending free balls back over the net, which Blair capitalized on by setting up its own hitters.
In the second game of the night, Blair's domination on the court was still apparent. The Blazers scored the first nine points of the game on ace serves by standout sophomore Amanda Hsiung and senior Michael Fan, as well as kills by senior Aric Lin.
The Rams then went on a three-point run of their own, made possible by missed hits by Blair. The Blazers countered with their own three-point run, to put them up 12-3 and, after numerous side-outs, finally put the game away.
For the Blair squad, the Rockville game marked a change in its style of play. "Previously, when we played bad teams, we always played to their level," said Tracy Lin. "But today, we went by them and played our own game."
The highlight of the match came after the Blair win, when the entire team poured bottles of cold water onto shocked and unsuspecting coach John Mott.
The match also featured the first game for junior Jeffrey Jabonete, who dislocated his shoulder earlier in the season. "It was nice to be back in the game," said Jabonete. "[My shoulder] is not 100 percent healed, but almost there."
The Blazers aim to improve on last year's 12-2 record and secure a high seeding in the playoffs, where they may face Gaithersburg and Sherwood high schools, perhaps the strongest coed volleyball teams in the county.
As nearly every member of the starting lineup is a returning senior, the team has high hopes. "Many of us have been playing together for several years now, and as the season progresses we'll get into our groove to put up a formidable playoff-hungry team," said Alyono.
The Blazers were defeated by Quince Orchard on Apr 20, for the second year in a row. Although Quince Orchard played a well-rounded game, the Blazers lost the match because of their own mistakes and miscommunication.
Blair faces Blake High School's squad today at 6 p.m., a match the Blazers expect will only extend their winning streak.
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