08/18/10 — WCDS spikers defeat rival

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WCDS spikers defeat rival

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on August 18, 2010 1:47 PM

Play Charger ball.

Finish the point.

Wayne Country Day executed those two commands from head coach Juliet Jones at the right time, and upended county rival Wayne Christian 25-15, 22-25, 26-24, 25-21 inside a sweltering Clifford Gymnatorium on Tuesday afternoon.

Hannah Pearson pounded out a match-high 20 kills, including six during key stretches in the third and fourth sets. Kim Martell added 11 kills and three solo blocks. Setters Sterling Coggins and Edie Hooks passed out 18 and seven assists, respectively.

Outside hitter Courtney Albritton, a transfer from Faith Christian, emerged the Eagles' top offensive leader with seven kills. Summer Brathwaite and Britney O'Hara, a pair of returning starters, supplied six kills apiece.

Katie Isenhower handed out a match-high 26 assists.

The teams split the first two sets.

Hooks played superb defensively (six digs) as WCDS claimed the opening set. Sarah Crooks served two aces and Pearson recorded a kill off Coggins' assist, which gave the Chargers a 1-0 advantage in the best-of-five affair.

The Eagles (0-1 overall) used two unforced errors to turn a 21-20 deficit into a 22-21 deficit in the second set. The Chargers stayed within striking distance at 24-22, but gave the Eagles the match-tying set with a service error.

"The first set, we played extremely well," said WCDS head coach Juliet Jones. "In the second set, they lost their aggressiveness. They weren't hitting as hard. I told them you can't do that and think they're just going to hand it to you.

"We're not playing Charger ball. We have to be aggressive."

Wayne Christian tied the third set at 20-20 on O'Hara's service ace. Albritton and Brathwaite combined for three consecutive kills off Isenhower assists to put the Eagles in front, 23-20.

Albritton's fourth kill of the set gave Wayne Christian set point at 24-21. The Chargers answered with a 5-0 run, capped by Emily Warren's ace. Pearson notched three straight kills off Coggins' assists to help set up the final point.

"That was a back breaker," said Eagles coach Rick Moore.

WCDS bolted to a 19-10 lead in the final set, only to see its archrival pull within 20-16. O'Hara ripped a kill off a solo block for the sideout, and then served back-to-back aces.

Rachel McCullom's ace kept the Eagles close at 23-20. Pearson provided the Chargers' final two match-clinching points on kills off Coggins' assists.

"I have some young players who are out there and some players who are stepping into bigger roles and feeling the pressure," said Moore. "I think that was the main thing (today). We could never seem to relax, just play and get after it.

"When you have trouble finishing, that's a definite indicator that we're playing tentative."