Sports

Strong Serving From Shenk ’12 Helps Andover Beat Rival Exeter

Strong serving frm Co-Captain Megan McCafferty ’10 and Jamie Shenk ’12, propelled Andover to a 3-0 victory over Exeter in the rivals’ first meeting this season. Andover dominated the first set with their strong defense and great communication. The team only allowed Exeter one service point, and led for the duration of the set, beating Exeter 25-11. However, in the second set, the Andover offense slowed down, allowing Exeter to take a commanding 10-1 lead. However, Andover stormed back, bringing the score to 18-21. Riding the serving arm of McCafferty, Andover earned more than five consecutive service points to bring the lead within reach. After winning back the serve from Exeter, Shenk took command of the game. She stepped up to the service line and fired six consecutive winning serves, adding three aces along the way. Andover jumped to a 25-21 victory and a commanding 2-0 lead. Andover seemed to have the game in hand, up 2-0 in games, and owning most of the points. Coach Clyfe Beckwith felt comfortable enough with the lead to give some of the players with less playing time a chance to gain some experience. Alice Tao ’11 and Sarah Onorato ’11 played quality minutes in the intense third set, and Shelby Carpenter ’12 added several big kills, gaining some important momentum. Despite falling behind 4-0 and 9-8, the team’s offense found holes in the Exeter defense, and Andover won 8 of the next 9 points. The team cruised from there, winning the set 25-19 and the match 3-0. Andover, now 6-1, finds itself in a very interesting race for first place. They are currently tied with one-loss Choate (who they were defeated by last week), and one loss Hotchkiss (who they beat last week). Andover finds itself in second place right now because of its loss to Choate. If third place Hotchkiss beats Choate, Andover will be alone in first. This race for first is sure to be a very interesting one, likely lasting until the final game. Saturday, Andover will face Northfield Mount Hermon for the second time this season. While Andover tidily defeated NMH last time the two teams met, the league game will prove crucial for Andover. Looking to secure that number one seed for the tournament, Andover cannot afford to drop a game, starting with Saturday’s contest.