York Suburban swept by powerhouse Lower Dauphin in District 3 2-A boys' volleyball final

York Suburban's Brady Stump(17) against Lower Dauphin in the District 3 Class 3-A Boys Volleyball Championship in Springettsbury on Thursday, May 26, 2022

EMIGSVILLE – The York Suburban boys’ volleyball team was feeling understandably upbeat after claiming the program’s first York-Adams Tournament title in a decade.

The Trojans continued their momentum throughout the District 3 Class 2-A playoff bracket to advance to Thursday’s final opposite Lower Dauphin.

In a typical season, the Trojans would have had to survive a gauntlet of top-flight squads to capture a Y-A crown.

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Not so much this year. Northeastern and Central York were both quality teams, but neither was of the same state championship caliber as recent Bobcats and Panthers squads.

So, in the district final, the Trojans got a taste of playing against one of the state’s giants -- a Lower Dauphin squad that captured the PIAA 2-A championship a year ago.

Bringing their “A” game was a must against the Falcons, who downed the Trojans in a five-set thriller in last year’s district final.

Unfortunately for the Y-A champs, that didn’t happen.

The highly-touted Falcons showcased a bevy of skilled attackers in taking the action right to the Trojans. While the YS boys put up a fight, it wasn’t nearly enough. Lower Dauphin rolled to 25-17, 25-18, 25-19 triumph at Central York High School.

“We expected a battle,” Suburban coach Oliver Good said. “Lower Dauphin is a great program with great players and coaches. We knew they were going to be a team that is rolling right now, and if you look at their record (19-1), they have that record to back it up.”

The only setback the Falcons endured all year was a 3-0 defeat to Palmyra, who is ranked No. 7 in the latest Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association poll in 3-A. No other team has taken the defending champs, who are ranked No. 2 in the 2-A poll behind Meadville, to a fifth set.

Part of what makes the Falcons so difficult to defend is their variety of attackers. In the sweep, the Falcons failed to have a single player record double-digit kills. Luke Gibbs led the way with nine. Instead, LD had five players record at least four kills apiece.

“They are really well-rounded team,” Good said. “So, it’s very difficult to slow down one player when they have a lot of people that can step up.”

Good, however, feels that his team certainly isn’t outclassed by the Falcons. He pointed to some problem areas his Trojans suffered through Thursday that prevented them from playing that “A” game that he knows they possess.

“We are going to have to get back to playing as a team,” Good said. “I don’t think we did that tonight.”

YS setter Luis Montalvo, who dished out 26 assists, pointed to his team’s serving as an area that needs to be better if the Trojans hope to earn a rematch in the PIAA 2-A finals in a couple weeks.

“Lower Dauphin has some great hitters and a great setter,” Montalvo said. “And their serves were really consistent. Ours, unfortunately, we missed some.”

Brady Stump led the Trojans (18-2) with 14 kills while teammate Jackson Bryant finished with six.

The Trojans, who are ranked No. 3 in the 2-A coaches’ poll, will enter the PIAA 2-A draw next week, where they will face Southern Lehigh, the runner-up from the combined District 1-2-11 tournament. That match is set for Tuesday at a time and location yet to be determined.

Southern Lehigh, who was unranked, fell to Dock Mennonite (ranked No. 5 in 2-A) by a 3-1 margin in its final Thursday.

Reach Ryan Vandersloot at sports@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @ydsports.