The York Suburban girls' volleyball team is quickly becoming the measuring stick for York-Adams Division II rivals.
So far this season, none of those rivals has been able to measure up.
That trend continued Tuesday night when the Trojans played host to an up-and-coming Kennard-Dale squad.
While the Rams were able to hang around early in Game 1 and Game 3, the visitors were unable to match the versatile attack and consistent serving of Coach Sonia Guyer's club.
The result was a 25-18, 25-16, 29-27 victory for a Suburban squad that improved to 6-0 in the division. K-D fell to 3-3.
"There's a big picture in mind here," Guyer said. "We just need to stay focused on it and work hard."
The Trojans showed off their might in Game 1 and Game 2, when both their serving and attack games were on point. But a trend — taking a moment to relax a bit — is one that nearly all good teams seem to encounter during the season. On Tuesday, it almost cost Suburban a game.
"I wish that we didn't do that," Guyer said. "We were hitting on all cylinders in that second (game), and to go from there to what we did into the third I think it's just a case of relaxing."
The teams traded the lead back and forth in Game 3 through the first 26 points (13-13). Suburban, however, managed to take a 19-16 lead late before allowing the Rams a chance. Coach Jim Keirn's side fought back to take a 24-21 lead.
After a side-out, the home team got some clutch serving from setter Georgia DuMars. DuMars cranked back-to-back aces to pull her team even before adding another point to make it 25-24. K-D, however, stayed around with some key points to get another game point at 27-26, but dropped the final three points after a Suburban timeout.
"That's like the Suburban signature," DuMars said of her team's penchant for playing its best when in dire straits. "We start a little slow but when we get our backs up against a wall, we get the job done."
While the setback against a quality club like Suburban can be a moral victory for the K-D program, Keirn isn't really happy to spin things that way.
"We don't just want to hang around," Keirn said. "We'd love to come out of here with three wins, but this is something to build on."
The Rams haven't traditionally been a volleyball power on the girls' side, but they have improved markedly under Keirn, who also coaches the boys' volleyball team at K-D.
"He's doing a nice job with their program," Guyer said of the Rams coach.
DuMars finished with 25 assists to pace Suburban, while Ciara Buckingham led the Trojans with 13 kills. Parker Faircloth-Henise tallied eight blocks to go with three kills, while Jordan Landis finished with three aces, seven kills and nine digs for Suburban.
Setter Adrianna Hoke dished out 21 assists for the Rams, 15 of which went to attacker Katie Leftridge.
OTHER GIRLS' VOLLEYBALL
Susquehannock 3, West York 2: At West York, a match-high 27 kills from Laura Savin helped the Warriors escape with a trim, 26-28, 25-18, 18-25, 26-24, 15-13 road victory. Savin also added 19 digs defensively. Kelly Franz turned in a 30-assist, 22-dig, three-ace performance for the victors. West York was led by a 16-kill, 16-dig effort from Amanda Sides. Abbey James carded 42 assists, 10 digs, three aces and a kill for the Bulldogs. Susquehannock improved to 6-0 in York-Adams Division II, while West York fell to 4-3.
Red Lion 3, Dallastown 0: At Red Lion, the Lions topped the Wildcats in this rivalry in straight games, 25-17, 26-24, 25-14. Rachel Groff had 25 assists for Red Lion, while Lauren Enfield finished with eight kills and eight digs. For Dallastown, Kat Forry came up with 18 digs and Olivia Terroso had three blocks. The Wildcats won the JV match, 25-19, 26-24.
Northeastern 3, York 0: At York High, the visitors dominated, 25-15, 26-24, 25-4. Alivia Crerand (16 assists, five aces), Abby Braswell (seven kills) and Jordyn Smeltzer (eight aces, six kills, four digs) paced the Bobcats. The Bobcats also won the JV match, 25-8; 25-13.
South Western 3, Dover 0: At Hanover, the home team cruised, 25-11, 25-6, 28-26. Bonna Sheehan (16 assists, seven digs, six kills), Hannah McMaster (six kills, nine aces, nine assists, 10 digs) and Tori Sager (seven kills, eight digs) led the winners. Dover's leaders were Abby Diehl (13 assists), Emma Davis (four kills, four digs, four blocks) and Rachael Wagner (seven digs). South Western won the JV match, 25-12, 25-16.
Gettysburg 3, Eastern York 1: At Wrightsville, after dropping the opening game, the Warriors won the next three to knock off the Golden Knights, 21-25, 25-16, 25-19, 25-16. Emma Harvey had 22 digs for Gettysburg, while Olivia Faloon had four aces. Eastern got a big performance Liz Pyles, who had 21 assists. The Warriors also won the JV match, 25-19, 27-25.
Littlestown 3, Fairfield 0: At Littlestown, the home team rolled, 25-7, 25-15, 25-15. Emily Staub (25 assists), Jillian Persing (10 digs) and Hanna Riley (10 kills) led the winners. Littlestown won the JV match, 25-6, 25-9.
Delone Catholic 3, Hanover 0: At Hanover, the York-Adams Division leaders rolled, 25-15, 25-12, 25-20. Katie Laughman (28 assists, seven digs) and Sarah Senft (seven digs, six kills) powered Delone. The Squirettes won the JV match, 25-12, 25-10.
York Catholic 3, Bermudian Springs 2: At York Catholic, the Irish and Eagles played a classic, alternating games won, before the home side prevailed in the fifth game, winning the match, 27-25, 15-25, 31-29, 18-25, 15-10. Brooke Ricks had 22 digs for the Irish, while McKenna Walker finished the match with 29 assists. Eliza Johnson (nine) and Bella Kepner (seven) combined for 16 kills for York Catholic. The Irish also won the JV match, 25-14, 20-25, 15-6.
Central York 3, Spring Grove 0: At Spring Grove, the Panthers rolled, 25-13, 25-19, 25-5. Central improved to 6-0 in York-Adams Division I.
— Reach Ryan Vandersloot at email@example.com.