Down 24-19 in the fourth set of the match and facing a two-set deficit, Andover Girls Volleyball battled its way back to win five straight match points and a five-set victory over Loomis Chaffee (Loomis) in the end. Andover continued its positive momentum on Wednesday, beating St. Paul’s 3-1 to propel its record to 4-1.
Although the team struggled to effectively communicate on the court against Loomis, it kept its composure and started to gain energy after the third set.
Claudia Leopold ’18 said, “We were not communicating very well in the first two sets, and so we let a lot of balls drop, especially in out-of-system plays, because no one was saying ‘mine’ and taking control of the play.”
“Our level of play really turned around during the third set because we stopped depending on the other team and the crowd for energy. Having that type of intensity on the court made us all react faster, call for the ball, and play as a team,” she continued.
Once Andover found its footing, it was able to work as a team.
Post-Graduate (PG) Margot Forti ’17 and newcomer Brooke Fleming ’20 played key roles in the team’s victory, earning several service points for Andover. At one point in the match, Forti served seven straight service points to extend the team’s lead.
Serena Liu ’19 said, “Claudia Leopold really helped in our offense with serves and blocks in the defense. Sidney Holder ’17 and Sewon Park ’17 dominated hits on the right side.”
On Wednesday, Andover defeated St. Paul’s by a 3-1 margin. Although the team fell short in the second set, key hits from Janneke Evans ’18 and Leopold propelled the team to take the next two sets, claiming its third straight victory.
Leopold said, “We really focused on winning the first set because we knew that it would be really important for team spirit. In the second, we were more complacent and relaxed because of our first set win, so we lost that set. But, after that, we improved our communication and worked as a team to win the next two sets.”
Following its two victories, Andover feels confident in its abilities to play at a consistently high level. Andover hopes to extend its winning streak when it hosts Northfield Mount Hermon (NMH) on Saturday.
Captain Evelyn Mesler ’17 said, “For Saturday we are working on maintaining a consistent level of energy on the court and never getting down and allowing the other team to take more than two points at a time.”
Editor’s Note: Sewon Park is a Commentary Editor for The Phillipian.