Northampton Press

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Volleyball looks to make a push

Wednesday, May 1, 2019 by tom wenborg Special to the Press in Sports

In the Northampton boys volleyball match against Parkland on Tuesday night, the Kids outscored the Trojans 105 points to 92. Unfortunately, the match is decided by the number of sets won and Parkland had the edge 3-2. The set scores were (Northampton points first) 25-14, 23-25, 18-25, 25-12, 14-16.

The Kids opened the match by playing their best set of the season. “They came out laser focused in the match and in warmups,” said head coach Sue Arndt.

Northampton got out to an early, 9-4 lead and never looked back as Parkland scored only 4 points on serve in the set.

The Kids had a chance to take a 2-0 lead in sets as they built a 19-16 lead in the back-and-forth second set. The Trojan servers were able to scratch out just enough points to turn the tables and even the match.

Northampton’s serve-receive struggled in the third set as they gave up 3 scoring runs of 4 points or more to Parkland servers.

The Kids’ defensive identity reasserted itself in the fourth set as Parkland managed just 2 points on serve.

The climactic fifth set saw the Trojans jump out to a 6-2 lead, prompting an Arndt timeout. The Kids responded to narrow the margin to 7-9, leading to a Parkland timeout. Northampton kept battling and tied the score at 12-12. Freshman Jackson Fehnel recorded a kill for a side-out and followed with another to give the Kids a match point at 14-12.

A service error gave the Trojans a side-out and Northampton’s final chance at match point ended with the ball harmlessly in the net on the Kids’ side.

The Kids’ leaders in kills for the match were Fehnel with 12, Dylan Holland and Matt Fenstermaker with 8, and Aidan Holihan with 7. Setter Chris Miller dished out 31 assists and had 15 digs and 5 kills. Libero Luis Roman had 25 digs, several of which were of the point-extending, spectacular variety.

The Kids have three more chances to secure their district playoff berth. On Friday night, they take on Bethlehem Catholic in Pete Schneider Gymnasium. Northampton dropped a 4-setter to the Hawks in March. On Monday night they host Dieruff for Senior Night. The Kids defeated the Huskies in 4 sets on April 1. The regular season finale is at Nazareth next Thursday as Northampton faces the Blue Eagles (currently 5-9) for the first time this season.

Arndt expressed total confidence in her team’s qualifying for districts. “We’ll be fine,” she said. “I anticipate sweeping the rest because they’re not going to play the way they did tonight and lose to Beca.”