Lady Marauders spike Altoona
It’s early — very early — but it looks like the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic girls volleyball team could be headed for another big season.
Ranked ninth in the state (Class 1A) by the Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association, the Lady Marauders swept city rival Altoona, 3-0, Thursday night at the Pleasant Valley gymnasium.
BG veteran coach Bob Kasun did his best to downplay the Marauders’ dominating effort as they boosted their record to 4-0.
“It’s always a battle when you play Altoona,” Kasun said. “(Coach) Karan Price runs a first-class program and they played well tonight. I know they’ll keep getting better and better and we know we’re fortunate to come out with a victory tonight.”
But, in sweeping three sets by scores of 25-17, 25-21 and 25-10, the Lady Marauders showed they had more than fan support. They were dominant on the court in all phases.
“BG is senior loaded, well-coached and they exposed a lot of things we have to improve on,” Price offered. They’re solid in all positions. They’re scrappy and don’t let balls fall.
“Credit to them. They played outstanding tonight.”
The first set was tied at 12-12 when BG went on a 13-5 run to post a 25-17 win. Altoona’s Lady Spikers built a 15-12 lead in the second set only to see the Marauders score eight of the last 12 points for a 25-21 win. BG controlled set 3 and was never threatened en route to a 25-10 win.
“We were clicking on all cylinders tonight,” Kasun said. “It was a great team effort and we really spread the ball around. A lot of people were involved and there were a lot of heroes on our side of the net.”
One of those heroes was sophomore outside-middle hitter Lyzee Wilson. A transfer from Altoona, the 6-foot-1 Wilson had a team-high 10 kills and put the finishing touches on sets 1 and 2 with the final point in each.
“Lyzee did a great job,” Kasun said. “She’s an offensive force for us. We established Lyzee in the middle and then (6-foot senior) Pam Lund got going and it opened up other hitting. In the third set, we started getting the ball to (6-foot sophomore) Teresa Haigh and she did a good job putting the ball away. She’s another weapon for us.”
Kasun was quick to acknowledge the play of senior setter Gabby Krug, a two-time all-stater, who had 41 assists.
“She did a great job of getting everyone involved,” Kasun said of Krug. “We have some big hitters and we were able to spread the ball around which is going to make us special because teams can’t concentrate on a couple of hitters.”
Meanwhile, the Marauders’ defense was able to stop Altoona’s scorers.
“We blocked well,” Kasun said, “but, when you have either one or two 6-foot blockers at the net all the time, it makes it easier to play defense.”
“As I said, they showed us where we need to get better,” Price added.
Game notes: Wilson and Lund each had 10 kills, Rachel Meintel and Beth Yahner 8 each. … Emily Brown had 11 digs for BG, one more than Alicia Nicolini and Meintel. … For Altoona, Brigid Fox had 11 kills and 18 digs while Emily Albright had 24 assists.
ALTOONA: Clawson 8, Alwine 5, Bridig Fox 4.
BISHOP GUILFOYLE: Meintel 13, B. Yahner 12, Brown 12,Nicolini 10, Krug 10, Kasun 7, Lund 1.
Records: Bishop Guilfoyle (4-0); Altoona (2-1).
JV: Altoona won, 2-1.