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York Suburban storms back to win District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball championship

ROB ROSE
717-505-5418/@robrosesports
  • York Suburban won the District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball title on Tuesday.
  • The Trojans earned the crown with a 3-2 victory at Garden Spot. Suburban rallied from a 2-0 hole.
  • Both teams entered Tuesday's match ranked among the top four teams in the state in 3-A.
  • Suburban will advance to the state quarterfinals on Saturday against District 2 champion Berwick.

NEW HOLLAND — All season long, the York Suburban girls' volleyball team had no issues winning matches.

The Trojans didn't drop a set through the regular season and only lost one set in the playoffs en route to Tuesday's District 3 Class 3-A title game at top-seeded Garden Spot.

Tuesday night, however, was a whole different story.

Suburban lost the first two sets to Garden Spot and found itself 25 points away from the end of its season. It was a completely unfamiliar situation.

York Suburban at Garden Spot in District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball championship, Tuesday, November 10, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Trojans' coach Sonia Guyer didn't make any lineup changes or any major moves with her team's season on the line. She just reminded her group of their abilities and, if they played their game, the match could still be won.

“You know what you need to do, you’ve been doing it all year long, just go out and execute,” Guyer said of her message to the Trojans heading into the third set.

The Trojans did just that.

Suburban stormed back to claim the final three sets and win the district title, the program's first since consecutive crowns in 1975 and 1976. The set scores were 23-25, 20-25, 25-18, 31-29, 15-12.

“With our team, as experienced as we are, we still have some roller-coaster moments,” Guyer said. “When we have those roller-coaster moments, it’s about staying patient and staying the course. Trust the system, trust the process and the result will follow.”

York Suburban celebrates after coming back from a 2-0 deficit to beat Garden Spot 3-2 and claim the District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball championship title, Tuesday, November 10, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Springer sets career high: One of those experienced members of the team is setter Caitlin Springer. The senior recorded a career-high 50 assists in the victory and helped guide the Trojans through their early turmoil.

“It’s crazy, it’s so crazy,” Springer said. “It’s so surreal to have that experience, especially in such a big game like this and going five sets. It’s just really awesome.”

Pivotal fourth set: The Trojans needed to win the third set to stay alive, but the fourth set produced the real drama. After trading points all set, Guyer called timeout with her team trailing 24-23 — one point away from the end of their season.

Suburban fought off six straight match points and eventually took the set, 31-29, to even the match and claim the momentum from the Spartans on their home floor.

“We’re pretty good at keeping our cool,” Springer said. “It was very stressful, but it was really awesome. We kept our cool and got through it and ended up winning, which is awesome.”

York Suburban at Garden Spot in District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball championship, Tuesday, November 10, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Closing it out: In the fifth-and-final set, Guyer once again used a timeout in a crucial spot. With the game tied 10-10, the Trojans' coach reminded the players they could finish off this victory by playing their game.

“I have never trusted a team as inherently as I do with them,” Guyer said. “You can just put them out there on the court and they will go out and get it done.”

Suburban rewarded its coach for her belief by closing out the set, 15-12, and claiming the title.

Head coach Sonia Guyer talks to her York Suburban team during the District 3 playoffs. The Trojans need just two more wins to claim a PIAA Class 3-A state title. John A. Pavoncello photo

“In the end, these girls just showed a lot of grit, a lot of mental toughness and they were not going to be the ones to lose tonight,” Guyer said.

Other Suburban standouts: In addition to Springer's big night, junior Eliana Rodgers had 18 kills, while fellow junior Zoe Haines added nine kills and senior Maddison Perring racked up 12 kills. Senior Libero Peyton Lando also had 30 digs.

York Suburban at Garden Spot in District 3 Class 3-A girls' volleyball championship, Tuesday, November 10, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

No. 2 seed Suburban improved to 17-0, while No. 1 seed Garden finished at 16-2.

Moving on: The York-Adams Division II champion Trojans will now advance to the state quarterfinals at 1 p.m. Saturday against District 2 champion Berwick. That match will be played in the Suburban gym.

Suburban will enter that match ranked No. 4 in the state in 3-A by the Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association. Berwick is unranked. Garden Spot had been ranked No. 2 in the state in 3-A.

Reach Rob Rose at rrose@yorkdispatch.com.