Northern of Calvert crushes No. 1 Severna Park's dream

Falcons' only loss of '01 is for state championship

Class 3A volleyball

November 18, 2001|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,SUN STAFF

Top-ranked Severna Park's dream of a perfect season was abruptly ended last night in the Class 3A state volleyball final at CCBC-Catonsville at the hands of powerful Northern-Calvert.

The Patriots won their third consecutive state title, eighth overall, by 15-12, 15-1, 15-4 over the Falcons (20-1).

"Definitely, our defense struggled big time, " said Severna Park hitter Lauren Klau, who was 13-for-13 serving and had four kills and five block.

"They smacked the heck out of the ball. When our block wasn't there, it just went down. They have an amazing offense. We were nervous at the start and we never had our comeback."

All season, the Falcons made a habit of falling then coming back for a victory. But Northern was too good to fall behind against.

After taking the first game by three, the Patriots ripped the Falcons, 15-1 in the next one to swing momentum heavily their way.

The senior Karcesky hitting twins, Casey and Cory, knocked down 12 kills each. Heather Schreiber, a 5-foot-9 sophomore, fired off 11. Senior middle hitter Cindy Haynes also helped the Patriots (18-1) control the net and consistently found a hole in the middle of the Falcons' defense - especially in the second game.

"They ran a very strong offense, hitting in the middle, hitting line, across court and with us not moving our feet. Every time they hit the ball, it was a kill," said Severna Park first-year coach Julie Allen.

Patriots junior setter Junel Jeffries set a state final record for assists (33) eclipsing the mark of 22 - set by Severna Park's Jaime Pirotte in the Falcons' 1992 state championship win over Northern.

Connections between the two teams are endless.

It was the seventh playoff meeting between the two schools. Severna Park won the first two meetings, in the state finals in 1991 and 1992 and the third in the '93 region final, all under coach Tim Dunbar. The Falcons went on to win the '93 state title over Quince Orchard.

Allen was a sophomore hitter on the '93 team that finished 22-0.

After 1993, Northern became the Falcons' nemesis, eliminating the latter three straight years in the regional and copping 4A State titles in 1994, '95 and '96.

Northern won its first 3A state crown in 1997 with Severna Park still in 4A until this season. Nothing has changed as the Patriots continued to be the Falcons' pain-in-the-neck - literally.

It's a wonder several of the Falcons didn't go home with stiff necks after turning their heads so many times as the Patriots whizzed kills and points by them.

Setter Megan Boyd, who was 8-for-9 serving with nine assists and three kills, said the loss did not diminish what the Falcons accomplished this year in winning county and region titles.

"We'll get over it, we had a great season, " said Boyd. "Our team meshed so well on and off the court. We can't let this one game get to us."

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