JV girls' volleyball loses to Wootton 0-2
OCT. 6, NELSON H. KORBEN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM-
The JV girls' volleyball team fought valiantly against the Wootton Patriots, but lost 20-25 in both the first and second matches. The Blazers' season record has now dropped to 3-5.
Blair began the afternoon with a rocky start, struggling to return serves that landed deep on the court. Early in the game, sophomore Wenjia Zhu and freshman Olivia Bozik both successfully rushed to reach violently passed balls when freshman setter Christie Lin called for help. This allowed sophomore Alice Fan to safely get several third balls over the net, but the Patriots' stronger hits down the line cost Blair several points.
The Patriots pounded the ball, yet the Blazers made impressive digs. Although most of Blair's balls were bumped over the net, the Blazers' consistent plays kept the score tight. As the match progressed, Wootton's offensive errors increased, allowing Blair to pull ahead 12-10 for the first time during the set.
The remainder of the first set consisted of the Patriots playing offensively and the Blazers dominating defensively. With 18-22 on the scoreboard, Blair called a timeout. When they returned to the court, the Blazers turned up the heat and the score was a difference of two points. However, the comeback was short lived, and Wootton regained momentum to kill three more balls to end the set.
The second set's pattern nearly mirrored the first set. Possession was continually traded, eliminating long runs by either side. Although the numbers were the same for both games, all of the girls were clearly less energetic during the last match. This led to more errors from both teams. Blair netted numerous balls while Wootton's hits landed outside of the court. Points depended greatly on the blunders of the opposing team. The game was neck and neck and tied at 20 before the Patriots managed to sweep the last five points.
This is the third game the Blazers have played without all-around starter junior Mimi Zou. Zou, a key player, quit the team for personal reasons, but according to Fan, Blair managed to readjust. "She was a strong member, but we all respect her decision to leave," Fan explained. Freshman Molly Martinez, a no-show, was expected to play this game. She, too, left the team, but the Blazers look forward to her return soon.
Despite today's loss, both the team and Coach Darya Holmes were pleased with the Blazers' performance. "I saw a lot of improvement. They did everything I asked, and they were just at the top of their game," said Holmes.
"We worked really hard, but we also had fun," added Lin. "Overall, our team played well today."
The Blazers next face Walter Johnson away on Oct.12 at 6 p.m.
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