Local Girls Volleyball Teams Go 5-1 in Opening Week
The area’s three high school girls volleyball teams got off to a quick start in the first week of the 2016 season, going 5-1.
Pinelands hosted an out-of-conference foe, Absegami, in its season opener last Thursday and easily won, 28-8, 15-9. The Wildcats traveled to Lakewood the next day for their Shore Conference B South debut and defeated the Piners, 25-14, 25-14.
Junior outside hitter Carly Jannsch had a good all-around game against Absegami, recording seven digs, four kills and three service aces while senior outside hitter Sydney Burke had five kills, three aces and two blocks. Junior setter Jessie Rising set the table with six assists.
The same trio led the way again versus Lakewood. Jannsch had eight aces and six kills. Burke contributed five digs, three kills and an ace. Rising had 10 assists. Pinelands, however, isn’t a three-girl team. Junior defensive specialist Jillian Williams had six digs and an ace; sophomore middle blocker Kayla Thornton accounted for six kills and three blocks.
Southern Regional visited Marlboro to open its season last Thursday and came away with a 25-20, 25-16 win. The scoring was spread out, with senior outside hitter Olivia Maxwell and sophomore middle hitter Kari Klimek leading the way with four kills each. Junior setter Morgan Koeppen and sophomore outside hitter Sarah Gildea each had seven service points, with four of Gildea’s being aces. Sabrina Woodlee, a senior libero, led the team with 11 digs while Maxwell added seven and Koeppen four.
Toms River South visited Manahawkin the next day. The Rams prevailed, 25-20, 20-25, 25-16. Gildea had a monster match, recording 15 kills,10 digs and three service points, including one ace. Koeppen had 24 assists, eight digs and five service points. Woodlee had a knee-pounding 18 digs and eight service points, including an ace, while Maxwell’s card shows seven service points, including two aces and six kills. A new name – sophomore defensive specialist Jess Sprankle – joined the list of Southern stars with 10 service points, including an ace.
On Friday afternoon the Barnegat Bengals hosted Manchester and won 25-11, 25-17. The scoring was well balanced, with seven girls recording kills, but none with over three. Sophomore Molly McEneaney was the team’s leader in service points with 10, one of which was an ace, while Roxy Urso and Kim Zalewski each chipped in with seven service points and an ace each. Setting duties were handled by McEneaney and Emma Lloyd, who recorded six and four assists respectively.
On Monday, Barnegat visited a tough Toms River North squad and fell, 25-18, 25-12, to end Southern Ocean County’s perfect start. Sophomore Lauren Walters led the Bengals with six kills.
— Rick Mellerup