TOWAMENCIN >> Plymouth Whitemarsh appears to preparing for a pretty special girls volleyball season, while North Penn is presently just sick of the whole thing.
That was the scenario Wednesday afternoon after the Colonials moved to 10-0 with a 25-19, 25-12, 25-12 win over the Knights in a contest that host North Penn rarely seemed to be in.
But more on that later.
First, a word on the Colonials, who have sailed along with an unbeaten record and few challenges early in the year.
According to head coach Seely Byler, PW’s proficiency is not unexpected.
“We just have a really well-balanced team,” Byler said. “There’s no real standout, everybody is good at what they do and can move the ball around.”
“We feed off each other,” added libero Olivia Carbo. “If we were missing a player, it wouldn’t matter because we’re all supportive of each other.
“We have a real positive energy.”
And that showed early, as the Colonials blew out to a 21-11 lead in the first set before settling for a 25-19 victory. And the momentum continued through two more sets of dominance.
As for North Penn, head coach Brian Harvey praised PW, but added that the majority of his team has been sick with a virus.
”We have nine girls sick, and we had to decide whether or not to allow them to play,” the coach said. “They played, but they were dead by the middle of the second set.
“I don’t want to take anything at all away from PW, they’re very good, especially their outside people. “When you’re getting 60 and 70 percent (efficiency) from your outside hitters that’s tough to beat.”
As the Colonials stepped up their game in the second and third sets, North Penn was just not able to respond.
PW opened the second set with a 5-0 lead, watched North Penn pull within 6-5 on an Allison Elechko kill, then took 19 of the next 26 points to go up by two sets.
The outside play of Emilee Waltz and Lily Acquaviva was vital in that second-set dominance.
The third set saw the visitors go up, 14-5, before pulling away.
North Penn huffed and puffed, but eventually ran out of gas.
“This was the team we had last year,” Carbo said. “We only lost two seniors, so we knew we would be strong.”
“We knew North Penn had a real strong right-side offense,” Byler said. “We wanted to make sure we served aggressively.”
By match’s end the Knights were breathing hard, the Colonials were breathing easy.
“We knew coming in they were solid,” Harvey said. “We couldn’t get them out of their system, and they just didn’t make mistakes.
“Plus, they cover so well for each other.”
As for PW, its sights are on a strong postseason, something it didn’t get a chance to attain last year.
“We got beat in the first round of districts by a very strong Mount St. Joseph team,” Byler said. “But I think we’re a little better than we were last year.
“This is just a real fun group to be around.”
Top Photo: Plymouth Whitemarsh’s Emilee Waltz tries to spike past North Penn’s Alycia Powers during their match on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. (Bob Raines/Digital First Media)