No. 3 Glenelg scrambles to top Sparrows Point Gladiators lose first game, rally for place in 1A finals

November 12, 1997|By Stan Rappaport | Stan Rappaport,SUN STAFF

Third-ranked Glenelg regained its composure after a shaky first game and defeated Sparrows Point, 11-15, 15-3, 15-2, 15-3 last night in a Class 1A state semifinal match at Essex Community College.

The Gladiators (14-5) will play Mount Savage of Allegany County, which defeated Rising Sun, 15-10, 15-11, 15-11 in the other semifinal, for the championship at 2: 30 p.m. Saturday at Catonsville Community College.

"We won and we served well. That's all I can say," said Glenelg coach Marlene Dugan. "Fortunately, our servers pulled it out."

Glenelg senior Vicki Bennett was 27 of 28 serving with six aces and sophomore Nicole Barnoski was 13 of 14 with two aces.

"Those two did a great job," said Dugan.

Glenelg, which won state titles in 1993 and 1995, took a 10-3 lead in the first game. Sparrows Point (10-9), behind the serving of Stephanie Martin, took advantage of numerous Gladiators' mistakes and ran off seven points.

Glenelg regained the lead at 11-10, but Sparrows Point, making its first state tournament appearance since 1989, won the last five points and the game.

Glenelg won the next three games easily because Sparrows Point couldn't return serve and served poorly itself.

"We could not receive serve," said Sparrows Point coach Linda Day said. "We were scrambling for the ball."

Kim Laws, who was 19-for-20 hitting with six kills, took much of the responsibility for Glenelg's lackluster showing.

"There was no talking, no hitting. It was just dead," Laws said. "We were too lazy out there. I take responsibility for leading the team and I didn't do it very well."

Added Dugan: "Our team wasn't out there tonight. Call it first-match playoff jitters. Hopefully this will get it out of our system and we'll be ready for Saturday."

Laws was eight of 10 serving with two aces, Jamie Bullock was 10 of 12 with three aces, Pam Goldberg nine of 11 with two aces and Chrissy Mills 10 of 12 with three aces.

* Class 4A semifinals: Watkins Mill (18-1), a Montgomery County team that has never won a state title, overwhelmed No. 2 Severna Park, 3-0, by lopsided scores of 15-5, 15-2 and 15-4.

Hitter Laura Anderson and setter Rikki Hess hooked up with outside hitters Kelly Ratliff and Leila Navidi to lead the well-balanced Wolverines into the state final.

The Wolverines, who lost last year's championship match to Northern of Calvert County, meets Bowie at 5 p.m. Saturday at Catonsville Community College.

Bowie easily defeated Perry Hall in the other 4A semifinal, 15-12, 15-7, 15-6.

The Bulldogs are attempting to become the first team from Prince George's County since 1980 to win a state championship. They had been eliminated in the semifinals the past three years.

Pub Date: 11/12/97

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