Towson blocks Ow. Mills, wins title

Rare Williams rejection inspires 3rd crown in row

Baltimore County volleyball

High Schools

October 30, 2003|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

When Towson's No. 2 volleyball team needed an emotional lift in the first game of last night's Baltimore County championship against No. 5 Owings Mills, senior setter Emmy Williams provided one.

The 5-foot-3 senior made a huge block against power hitter Nicole Puller to help turn the first game around and spark a 25-23, 25-15, 22-25, 25-10 victory for the Generals' third straight county volleyball title.

The host Generals (14-0) had trailed almost the entire first game, but with the Eagles leading 21-19, Laura Maas pounded a kill and then Williams put the brakes on Puller's hit.

"I was so excited," said Williams. "Of everything I do, that's my favorite part, because I don't usually block. It was a rare shining moment."

"Emmy, when she gets a block, she goes crazy," said teammate Kellie Krouse. "We got so pumped up after that."

The Generals finished off that game with six of the next eight points, capping it on a smart play from Maas, who found the open court with a well-placed tip.

Williams, however, was just the central cog in an all-around strong effort from the Generals. She dished out 33 assists, most to Krouse (11 kills), Maas (10) and Teri Stolarz (seven). While the Eagles attack almost exclusively from the left side with Stacey Wasserman (30 assists) feeding Puller (16 kills) and Lindsey Wenderoth (11 kills), the Generals hit from all over.

Towson's teamwork was never more evident than in the fourth game when the Generals made a key defensive shift to cover the short cross-court kills coming from Puller and Wenderoth.

The Generals' blockers were getting a piece of most of the hits and Kelly Gunning and Liz Kilduff dug up just about everything the block missed.

"We took the extreme cross court away and that was a big key," said Towson coach Jayne Lacy. "Kelly was huge on that [left] side, picking up a lot of balls."

Owings Mills coach Lisa Meyer said, "When we only attack from the outside and they have a block, they only have to play defense on 25 percent of the court. They're able to key in on where we're hitting because their block takes away so much of the court."

The Eagles (13-2) managed a third-game surge. Helped by Towson's difficulty passing, the Eagles led most of the game and after the Generals pulled ahead, 20-19, Puller had five kills in the game-ending 6-2 run to cut Towson's lead to two games to one.

However, the Eagles could not sustain the momentum.

"Our small mistakes added up," said Puller, whose team hoped to avenge its three-game loss to Towson in the season opener. "If we cut out the service errors or the bad passes, we definitely would have had it.

"We picked it up this match, more so than the beginning of the year, but we're not playing up to our potential. Hopefully, we'll be able to do that during regionals."

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