Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Secaucus Advances to Semis in Group

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Secaucus Advances to Semis in Group

Article excerpt

GLEN ROCK - Julia McClure carried Secaucus to the doorstep of victory, and Katelyn Schlemm and Alyson Toman climbed the final, critical steps.

The young Patriots defeated Glen Rock in Tuesday's state Group 1 girls volleyball tournament quarterfinal, 18-25, 27-25, 25-23, because Schlemm and Toman finished what McClure started.

Schlemm, a junior, scored Secaucus' 24th point on a kill, and Toman, a sophomore, scored the win-clinching 25th on a kill, after McClure had erupted for eight of her 24 kills to help turn a 14-12 deficit into a 23-19 lead.

"A lot of our games I end up in the back row right at the end of the sets," said McClure, a junior middle, "but I knew the way we were playing that they had it in them to finish it."

Fifth-seeded Secaucus (26-3) came precariously close to being finished off in two sets by No. 4 Glen Rock (19-10).

Trailing 24-22 in the second set, the Patriots staved off a pair of match points, thanks to kills by Toman (seven kills) and Schlemm (10 kills).

"I think we were too tense the first game," said Secaucus coach Sheila Rivera, whose team was swept by Glen Rock in September. "And then we went into the huddle and told them, 'OK, you love volleyball that much, we're playing three.' And they were like, 'Yup.' "

Glen Rock's serve had Secaucus on its heels, especially in the first set. While Rivera said half of the Patriots' three-hour practice Monday was spent on receiving serve, the Panthers still had 11 aces, including four by senior Kelly Streaser.

"It was two evenly talented teams," said Glen Rock coach Matt Kingsley, "and they just made more plays at the end than we did."

Elsewhere in Group 1:

BOGOTA 25, 25, WOOD-RIDGE 11, 7 (at Bogota): Senior Carly O'Sullivan had 18 kills and sophomore Amanda Manzo 24 assists for top-seeded and three-time defending champion Bogota (25-4).

WESTWOOD 25, 25, KINNELON 18, 18 (at Washington Twp.): Senior Casey Trovini had five kills, and seniors Darian Henry and Masha Rosca had five digs apiece as No. 2 Westwood (25-5) stretched its winning streak to five.

RUTHERFORD 25, 25, ELMWOOD PARK 17, 16 (at Rutherford): Senior Karolina Kopocz had 15 assists and senior Erin Moss and sophomore Jessica Rogers seven kills apiece as No. …

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