EMIGSVILLE -- Sometimes, even the best of teams find themselves in a little trouble.
That was definitely true for the Susquehannock girls' volleyball team Thursday night against York-Adams Division I rival Central York.
After taking Game 1, the Warriors were mired in a downward spiral in Game 2. The home team could do no wrong and evened up the contest in dominating fashion.
The true test of a quality squad, however, is how it responds to a difficult situation. As Central quickly found out in Game 3, the visitors continued on as if nothing happened.
Susquehannock rebounded from that thumping in Game 2 to sweep the final two games to earn an important victory, 25-21, 12-25, 25-20, 25-23. First-place Susquehannock improved to 9-0 in the division, while second-place Central fell to 7-2. Each team has just three division games left.
"We were a little low," said Susquehannock's Abigail Bentz of Game 2. "It was tough to come back."
As Coach Rob Marrison pointed out, the Warriors aren't a team with a fragile psyche. In fact, they had a similar tailspin last weekend at the State College Tournament, where North Allegheny ripped off a 15-point run to turn a 15-10 lead into a 25-15 setback. That experience helped on Thursday night.
"We shook it off," Bentz said. "And we really came back. We were definitely strong."
Marrison pointed out that his team's normally rock-solid serve-receive was the Game 2 problem.
"When we pass the ball effectively, you don't see runs (against us) like that," he said. "And it all starts with our serve-receive."
The Panthers, who were looking to get a signature victory over the perennially strong Warriors, fell behind early in Game 3 and Game 4. While they rallied to make each game close, Central coach Nate Ocasio knows that playing from behind vs. a quality team such as the Warriors (ranked No. 8 in AAA in the latest Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association poll) is not a blueprint for success.
"You can't play from behind against good teams," he said. "Not against teams that have great defenses and can point-score."
While Susquehannock lacks that sure-fire, put-the-ball-away attacker, like they had a year ago in Sherelle Walker, the Warriors showed they can still get points when needed, with players such as Bentz (16 kills) and Leah Deter (eight kills) leading the way.
It was Bentz, in fact, who slammed home the game-winner with a cross-court smash.
Ocasio has a little disappointed with how his team passed at key moments.
"We came in with a plan and we executed it actually on the defensive end," he said. "It's just that we didn't take care of the ball, on our side, and that's what hurt us."
Panther senior standout Hadley Swartz finished with 14 kills and 10 digs. Setter Erin Dobbeck dished out 40 assists.
Susquehannock setter Rachel Moltz finished with 29 assists, 11 digs, four blocks and four kills. Libero Genna Weger collected 24 digs.
OTHER GIRLS' VOLLEYBALL
RED LION 3, WEST YORK 2: At West York, Red Lion scored a 25-22, 23-25, 22-25, 26-24, 15-12 victory on Dig Pink Night. Marley Vebares smacked 14 kills for the Lady Lions, and Brooke Daugherty put up 32 assists. Haley Barto and Kami Harvey teamed for 11 Red Lion kills. Lauren Fink and Dixie Miller combined for 31 West York kills. Meryssa Love served six aces and Olivia Drawbaugh and Carissa Stottlemyer combined for 35 assists. West York won the JV match, 25-17, 25-9. The two schools raised more than $3,000 for breast cancer awareness.
DALLASTOWN 3, SPRING GROVE 2: At Dallastown, McKenzie Peters and Katie Pennewill filled the stat sheet for the Wildcats in their 25-18, 21-25, 25-16, 29-31, 15-10 victory. Peters recorded 12 kills, five aces, six assists and four digs, and Pennewill delivered seven kills, 20 assists and five digs. Becca Flinchbaugh added seven kills to the winners' cause. Katie Baynum put up 16 kills for Spring Grove, and Becca Keller provided 29 assists. Dallastown won the JV match.
NORTHEASTERN 3, YORK HIGH 0: At York, Madison Reichard pounded seven kills to help power the Bobcats over the Bearcats, 25-6, 25-12, 25-10. Cheyenne Davis and Cory Cook combined for eight Northeastern kills, and Holly Shoemaker, Natalie Brown and Kylie Cotroneo served three aces apiece. Jasmine Berry (two kills, four digs), Anastacia Howard (two kills, two digs) and Leasia Henderson (four blocks) led York High. Northeastern won the JV match, 25-10, 25-13.
NEW OXFORD 3, EAST ERN 2: At Eastern, New Oxford rallied for a 26-28, 25-17, 11-25, 30-28, 15-12 Division II victory. Lexi Rhein had a huge match for Eastern with 31 kills, 21 assists and 28 digs. Lauren Reichard and Erin Kalke combined for 25 Golden Knights' kills, and Lauryn Snyder supplied 18 assists for the home team. Eastern won the JV match, 25-20, 25-16.
WAYNESBORO 3, LIT TLESTOWN 0: At Waynesboro, the Indians prevailed, 25-19, 25-20, 25-18. Taylor Nicol recorded five kills, four aces, four blocks and five digs for Littlestown, and Alicia Mosebrook finished with eight kills and 12 digs. Lauren Slater supplied 16 assists for the Thunderbolts.
BERMUDIAN SPRINGS 3, HANOVER 2: At York Springs, Lauren Shearer, Madison Itterly and Sandy Archer teamed for 40 kills as the Eagles outlasted the Hawkettes, 25-22, 30-28, 23-25, 18-25, 15-7. Shianne Fisher had 41 assists. Madison Hart and Shelby Barnes combined for 23 Hanover kills, and Renee Drawbaugh and Steph Howard supplied 25 assists and 17 assists, respectively. Bermudian won the JV match, 25-11, 25-19.
YORK CATHOLIC 3, FAIRFIELD 0: At York Catholic, the Irish won, 25-8, 25-13, 25-11. Zandria Zielinski led the Irish with 13 kills, four digs and three aces. Natalie Stewart had 19 assists. York Catholic won the JV match, 25-9, 25-13.
DELONE CATHOLIC 3, YORK TECH 0: At McSherrystown, the Squirettes won the York-Adams Division III match, 25-14, 25-10, 25-16. Mary Gingrow led the home team with eight assists. For the Spartans, Savannah Grimes had nine digs and four assists, while Adrianna Beattie had three kills and four digs and Krista Ruppert had five digs. Delone won the JV match, 25-6, 25-12.
SOUTH WESTERN 3, DOVER 1: At Hanover, Mariah Krumrine led the Mustangs to the 25-10, 22-25, 25-23, 25-20 win with 21 assists, 13 digs, four blocks and four kills. Erin Harman had 19 digs, nine kills and three aces, while Holly Arey had eight kills and six blocks. For the Eagles, Bayleigh Hoffman had 20 digs, 16 assists, 12 kills and five blocks, while Kylie Foust had 11 kills and 18 digs, and Megan Blazesky had 13 kills.
-- Reach Ryan Vander sloot at sports@yorkdis patch.com.