F.S. Key finishes strong, tops Perry Hall in five Weant serves last 5 points as No. 11-ranked Eagles pull upset on No. 9 Gators @

October 02, 1997|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,SUN STAFF

Francis Scott Key scored the last five points of the fifth game to outlast visiting Perry Hall last night, 9-15, 15-0, 15-8, 8-15, 15-9, in a matchup of ranked teams.

Down the stretch, junior Carrie Weant, Key's most consistent server, served the last run, and Perry Hall, on the defensive, could not come up with the big play.

Heather Abel, a senior outside hitter and the only returning starter from last year's Class 1A state finalist, plus junior middle hitters Jessica Broderick and Stephanie Robertson dominated the front line for No. 11-ranked Key (6-1) against the No. 9, Class 4A Gators.

Broderick had 12 kills and 10 service points. Robertson and Abel each had 10 kills.

Perry Hall (5-4), which also has lost to ranked teams Severna Park, Loch Raven, and Dulaney, got off to a fast start. But then the home team took charge, and the Gators bounced back to square the match.

"I told my team at the start of the fifth game that the team that

passes well will get out of here with a win," Perry Hall coach Pam Wilt said. "We passed up to nine and then broke down. They [Key] were the ones to pick it up."

Key was coming off a good effort in a four-game loss to Smithsburg Monday night, but last night coach Alice Smith said, "We were very inconsistent, and we struggled. However, the players were able to pick each other up."

They'll have to do it again this weekend, when Key gets its only shot at the other Carroll schools in the county tournament at Liberty. The Eagles are the defending champions.

Perry Hall started out as if it were going to make a short night of it, running off the first 11 points. Key collected itself, and closed to within 11-9.

Weant served the first eight points of the second match, and the teamwork Perry Hall had showed earlier failed to appear. Key made it 20 straight points when it went up 5-0 in the third, but then it was the Baltimore County team's turn to step it up.

The Gators drew within 10-8 before Weant served out the game, Jennifer Sawyer getting the best offensive hit of the stretch for the final point.

Perry Hall, with senior outside hitter Kristin Corbin as its most consistent player, had its best effort in the fourth game as it ran off to a 14-2 lead, then ended its opponent's comeback thoughts when junior Sharnell Sephes served the winning point.

"Key was very quick, but we might have been able to do more in my setter [Stephanie Xecominos] hadn't had to spend most of her time chasing bad passes," Wilt said.

Last week, Smith said her players needed more work on seeing where opposing players were. "We found a few open spaces and our movement was good, but we still need work."

Pub Date: 10/02/97

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