Birthday girl Keefe sparks Pennridge past Central Bucks South

EAST ROCKHILL — It was Meghan Keefe’s birthday, but she was the one giving all the gifts.

The Pennridge volleyball team’s setter filled the stat sheet as she facilitated the Rams to a home sweep over CB South (25-23, 25-14, 25-16) Monday night.

Whether it was a pinpoint pass, a surprise ball over or a diving dig, Keefe had it ready. The senior setter finished with 31 assists and a kill.

“We played well,’ Pennridge coach Zech State said. “At times we struggled with our defense and being big at the net, but the outcome was good. CB South is a good team and a really good serving team so we knew we had to pass well.’

The Rams were in dire straights a couple of times in Game 1. They fell behind 7-2 thanks to a torrid serving spell by CB South libero Larissa Keer.

Three straight kills by Breana Jackson and Taylor Danilowicz made it 13-7 in favor of CB South.

But that’s what Pennridge has Stephanie Judkins for.

The Rams’ skilled outside hitter put down a pair of kills to stem the bleeding. Pennridge clawed back in range, then used a big surge to swing the game. Judkins finished with a team-high 15 kills.

Three kills by Victoria Jones (eight kills) and a slam by Lauren Drugotch (six kills) powered the 4-1 run that saw the Rams take their first lead at 18-17.

CB South refused to fold but the Rams finally got an edge at 24-23 thanks to Judkins. A misfired shot led to a CB South overpass that Jones was all too happy to put away for the win.

Pennridge did not start slowly in the second game, but it couldn’t shake CB South. The teams went back and forth to a 9-9 deadlock, but the Rams started to pull away.

Victoria Jones and Ariana Przybylowski keyed the 8-1 Pennridge run that all but put the game out of reach. CB South compounded things with three costly hitting errors over that stretch.

South never got closer than eight points as the Rams’ defense ramped up its efforts.

Judkins, fed by Keefe, slammed down the final kill.

Much like the second game, an early

Pennridge run set up a defensible lead. With junior Ana Vitantonio behind the line, the Rams went up 7-5, then got a rare kill out of libero Kelly Bergen, which brought a celebratory fist-pump.

Bergen was a key part of the win, turning nearly every CB South serve into a playable ball for Keefe.

“It makes it so much easier,’ Keefe said. “You can basically run anything you want.’

Defensively, Bergen and Vitalino could have opened a floor-cleaning business with the way they kept coming up with digs.

Pennridge comfortably kept CB South at arms’ reach through the remainder of the final game. Kills by Keefe, Judkins and Przybylowski finished it off.

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