DALLASTOWN -- For awhile on Thursday night, the match appeared to be in Dallastown's hands.
The host Wildcats, who are ranked No. 10 in the state in Class AAA by the Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association, were controlling the ball with force vs. Northeastern.
Behind 6-foot, 5-inch, 240-pound senior Barrett Wingard, Dallastown used size to its advantage against a young Northeastern team that lost eight seniors from a squad that won the District 3-AA title a year ago.
For a change, the Bobcats, who are also ranked No. 10 in the state in AA by the PVCA, appeared to be the underdog.
The Wildcats dominated to win Game 1, then put up a challenge in Game 2, which Northeastern won by only four points. Dallastown
Unfortunately for the Wildcats, that's when things began to unravel. Suddenly, everything that worked earlier for Dallastown disappeared. Northeastern wound up scoring the final 10 points to win Game 3, then carried the momentum over to capture Game 4. The Bobcats won the match, 17-25, 25-21, 25-23, 25-21.
Moments after the match ended, Northeastern head coach Matt Wilson admitted he couldn't believe what he just watched.
"It's been a long time since I've seen something like that, especially a rally like that (in Game 3)," Wilson said. "For all intents and purposes, we were beat. So, we're lucky. We were fortunate with that one."
With the win, Northeastern (5-0 York-Adams League, 5-1 overall) remained tied with York Suburban (5-0, 5-0) for the top spot in the league. The Trojans beat Kennard-Dale, 25-16, 25-13, 25-14, on Thursday.
Dallastown fell to 4-2 in league play and 4-4 overall. Wingard (20 kills, five blocks, two aces) said a couple things doomed the Wildcats.
"We just dropped a little in communication," Wingard said. "(Northeastern) was just picking up every ball. We talked about getting the fire back and getting
Still improving: Sophomore Matt Hollinger (13 kills, eight digs) and junior Steven Braswell (16 digs, 11 kills, three blocks) are the only players for Northeastern who received significant playing time last season. So, Wilson has had his work cut out for him in making sure his squad stays competitive this year. And even though he saw some improvement out of his squad on Thursday, he said the Bobcats still have a ways to go.
"We're doing a nice job overcoming a lot of things right now," he said. "There are some natural deficiencies, like height, but there are overall deficiencies in our game. We're really overcoming those. At some point, you got to fix the deficiencies. Once that begins to happen I'll feel better."
OTHER BOYS' VOLLEYBALL
SUSQUEHANNOCK 3, SPRING GROVE 1: At Spring Grove, the Warriors grabbed a 25-18, 25-22, 21-25, 25-23 triumph. Thomas Bonitz (22 digs, 11 kills), Alex Miller (12 kills, 13 digs), Jon Rouse (30 assists, 19 digs) and Thomas Michels (33 digs) powered Susquehannock. Spring Grove was led by Drew Blecher (34 assists, nine kills, 10 digs), Dalton Hall (25 digs), Aaron Hoff (21 kills, 11 digs) and Derek Carlisle (19 digs). Spring Grove won the JV match, 24-26, 25-19, 17-15.
YORK SUBURBAN 3, KENNARD-DALE 0: At Suburban, the Trojans won the York-Adams League match, 25-16, 25-13, 25-14. Fred Gard led the home team with 11 kills, 16 assists and four digs. Jaryd Eshler had eight kills, four digs and three aces for Suburban, while Jacob Kauffman had six kills and five digs and Ted Hinnenkamp had seven kills and three assists. For the Rams, Nate Ellis had four kills and four digs. Suburban won the JV match, 25-11, 25-19.
RED LION 3, NEW OXFORD 0: At Red Lion, the Lions won the York-Adams League match, 25-19, 25-22, 25-9. Sam Marks led the Lions with eight kills and five digs. Dalton Fishel (22 digs, four aces), Jake Frey (14 digs, three kills) and Logan Brown (12 assists, three digs, three blocks) also excelled for the Lions. For the Colonials, Ross Starner had seven digs and six kills, while Joel Medina had eight assists. Red Lion won the JV match 25-15, 25-12.
DOVER 3, EASTERN 0: At Dover, the Eagles won the York-Adams League match, 25-10, 25-15, 25-22. Tyler Lehman led the Eagles with eight kills and five digs. Brandon Krone (23 assists, three kills), Ean Julius (five kills, three blocks) and Ryan Lamparter (eight kills, three aces) also had big nights for Dover. For the Golden Knights, Bryan Sloat had 15 assists and 13 digs, while Mike Bair had six kills, three blocks and four digs and Sandon Eaton had eight digs and three kills. Dover improved to 5-1 in league play.
CENTRAL 3, WEST YORK 0: At Central, the Panthers won the York-Adams League match, 25-6, 25-9, 25-10. Ryan Gardner led the Panthers with eight kills. Dylan Hose (23 assists, six digs, three aces), Seth Davies (seven aces) and Jesse Munson (10 digs) also shined for Central. For the Bulldogs, Bryce Love had four kills and three digs, while Evan Ferrell had 10 assists. Central won the JV match, 25-7, 25-17. Central improved to 4-1 in the league.
-- Reach John Walk at 505-5406 or jwalk@yorkdis patch.com or follow on Twitter @JohnKWalk.