Northampton Press

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Volleyball drops a close game to Parkland

Wednesday, April 11, 2018 by James bunting Special to the Press in Sports

When most Lehigh Valley boys’ volleyball teams face Parkland, their expectations tend to change.

They hope to compete. Maybe they can steal a set or two.

When Northampton welcomed the Trojans to Schneider Gymnasium on Tuesday, April 10, the K-Kids made it clear that they were there to win.

And they almost did.

Parkland defeated Northampton in a five-set thriller: 30-32, 25-15, 25-18, 21-25, 15-11. The loss dropped the K-Kids to 4-3 on the season and snapped their four-game winning streak.

“We knew that it was going to come down to working really, really hard and outworking them,” head coach Susan Arndt said. “We knew that it wasn’t going to be an easy win, but it was definitely in my ‘win’ column.”

Northampton survived five set points in the first set, with senior Brandon Caffrey making fantastic individual plays on the first three. After the K-Kids grabbed a 31-30 advantage, senior Nick Lessig delivered an emphatic kill to put the set away.

Parkland jumped out to early leads in the second and third sets, and Northampton was never able to close the gap.

But the K-Kids returned the favor in the fourth set. Northampton gained a six-point advantage early in the set, and the Trojans did not have an answer.

In the fifth set, Parkland once again jumped out to a 6-0 lead to start the set. Northampton cut the gap to three points on a couple occasions but was unable to inch closer.

Aside from junior libero Luis Roman, Northampton’s rotation is almost exclusively made of seniors. Arndt said that experience will be instrumental in the second half of the season as the K-Kids look to make a run in the District XI playoffs.

“We had to switch some things up with the offense and defense and they’ve accepted it and started to run with it. The experience is there, it’s just a matter of clicking and meshing as a team.”

The K-Kids will travel to Bethlehem Catholic on Thursday, April 12 then host Dieruff on Tuesday, April 17.