NEW PROVIDENCE (HOME)
9th Graders dispatched their New Providence neighbors in a 2-0 score-line to improve to 5W-0L!
Meanwhile JV was locked into a huge battle with the Pioneers as the New Providence squad used a consistent defense that led to many transition opportunities out of the middle to match the Hilltoppers offense. Despite an early Summit advantage, New Prov roared back to take a 24-23 lead and earn a set point. The Summit JV fought back to tie at 24 with a key kill by Abby Wells and then the junior stepped back and forced the Pioneers into a free ball error thanks to a tough serve and then, with the set on the line, she ripped an ace to seal the victory.
Set 2 saw the Hilltoppers take a 5 point lead at 19-14 and all seemed to be going the Maroon and Black’s way but just like set 1, the Pioneers were not going to be an easy out thanks to their defense and forced a SHS time-out at 19-18 Summit. Both squads kept slugging it out like heavyweights and neither side would yield an advantage as both teams were again tied late at 22. But then Wells got set the ball on a long rally that she finally put away to give the Top a 23-22 lead. But yet again the Pioneers fought that off and actually took a 24-23 lead to get another set point. SHS fought that point off but saw another set point against at 25-24 but Maeve Keegan got the set on a free ball return and she finished the attack in zone 5 to stave off that set point. Keegan went back to serve and ripped an ace to earn a match point and the next serve and return finished the job as the Hilltoppers improve to 6W-1L on a 27-25 win!!!
The Cranford Cougars pushed the Summit Hilltoppers on Thursday but SHS stepped up to the moment and came away with a 2-1 victory on the 9th Grade and Junior Varsity level at home.
The 9th Graders took set 1 25-14 with the main damage done under the serving game of Molly Davies who ran off 8 total service points to give SHS a 4-0 and a 21-12 lead that led to the 25-14 set 1 victory.
Set 2 was a closer affair but the Cougars seemed to be in control at 14-9 after 6 rotations.
Cranford looked to have things in. hand up 23-14 but the Hilltoppers had one run left in them, this time thanks to Amanda Jimenez who brought the Summit 9th graders to within 2 at 23-21 forcing a TO by the Cougars. Unfortunately, the deficit was too large and the Cranford frosh took set 25-21.
The decisive set 3 was over quick as the Hilltoppers took the decisive set 25-6 after being only up 10-5 after 6 rotations. Davies again turned it around with an 8-0 run that had the Top up 19-6 before she was done.
9th Graders stay perfect at 6W-0L.
JV improve to 7W-1L with a 3 set thriller against the Cougars. Summit dropped the first set 15-25, came back the second set with a 25-13 victory and won a nail biter of a third set 25-23 behind clutch serving and hitting in the late stages of the match.
GOVERNOR LIVINGSTON (9th AWAY, JV HOME)
The 9th Grade Program continued its undefeated season with a 28-26, 25-23 hard fought victory on the road by the Hilltoppers. Since Season 3 of 2021, the 9th Grade Program has posted a 15-0 record despite having more kids on a team than usually recommended AND despite having more inexperienced players than most teams we face. A credit to the girls and to the COACHING STAFF OF 1 in both seasons to manage and improve the squad! The work that is done at this level is the backbone of the success of JV (currently 8-1) and, eventually, Varsity (currently 6-3). Congrats Ladies!!!!
The JV Program that had lost to GL in 2 at the Highlander home court in the very first game of the season right after the squad had found out that they had lost one of their setters for the foreseeable future with a hand injury relied on a late Emily Demm service run to turn a 17-17 set one score at home into 24-17 and the set was finally won by Summit 25-17. Set 2 saw the Hilltoppers yet again embroiled in a tight match and clinging to a 19-18 lead late. Jessica Clark saved an errant pass and sent it to zone 5 on a free ball and the location was perfect, leading to an unlikely kill and a game changing 23-21 score line. Ally Liguori nailed an ace and served another tough serve that led to the final GL error and the 25-21 set 2 and match win to erase their only loss of the year.