Calvert blanks No. 2 Severna Park Falcons are shut out for 2nd time in 11 years

September 10, 1997|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,SUN STAFF

Veteran Severna Park volleyball coach Tim Dunbar hopes yesterday's effort by his Falcons was simply a "passing thing."

Uncharacteristic poor passing by the No. 2-ranked Falcons (1-1), compounded by the power of two girls named Erin, resulted in a 3-0 sweep by visiting Calvert High. Calvert (1-0) rolled to victory by scores of 15-1, 15-6 and 15-11.

Seniors Erin Fowler and Erin McMahon combined for 25 kills to pace the Lions, who moved down from 4A to 3A this season.

Sarah Grimm led the Falcons with five kills, and returning All-County outside hitter Julie Gosewisch and middle hitter Carolyn Page had three kills each. Gosewisch was 10-for-10 serving and had two aces in the loss.

It's only the second time in Dunbar's 11-year tenure that the Falcons have been shut out in regular season. Glen Burnie managed a shutout in the Gophers' 4A state championship season of 1990. That game was also at Severna Park.

"I think we had a lot of nervousness -- first game at home with a lot of kids up from JV," said Dunbar who lost three All-County players to graduation. "We played Perry Hall [a 3-0 victory on Friday] and did well, and I think maybe our kids thought that this team would be at similar speed, but they were a lot quicker, very quick. We never made that first pass today, and didn't have an opportunity to run any of our plays."

Falcons setter Lauren Boyd was all over the court trying to get the ball. The ideal strategy is for her to be close to the net in order to run the hitters.

"That's a new thing for us," Dunbar said. "Usually, we are pretty confident passers and the nervousness compounded things."

Calvert was also nervous in that the Lions were short-handed, but McMahon and Fowler ignited them early.

"We came in here without three starters because of discipline problems," said Calvert coach Tim Horsman, who also got outstanding efforts from sophomore setter Jen Peel (three aces), junior Amanda O'Rourke (three aces) and 6-foot freshman Rachel Leitch, up from the junior varsity.

"Two, maybe all three, are all-conference players, and without them we brought up a few JV players. I wasn't quite sure how we would do. I couldn't be happier to beat a great team and program like Tim has here."

"It's the best feeling in the world to finally beat them. Couldn't ask for more," said McMahon, savoring her first triumph over the Falcons and Gosewisch, with whom she plays club ball in the off-season. "Once we started rolling, there was no stopping us."

"We scheduled them because we wanted to play a tough match," Dunbar said. "I really believe we can pass better than we did. If we can't, it's going to be a long season. We have to learn and grow from this."

Pub Date: 9/10/97

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