Girls Volleyball: St. Francis rallies past Chicago Christian
By Phil Brozynski For Sun-Times Media September 25, 2013 9:12PM
Updated: October 28, 2013 7:14AM
Chicago Christian owned the first 26 points of Wednesday’s Suburban Christian Conference match at St. Francis.
It was the next 42 the Knights would rather forget.
Trailing 17-9 in Set 1, St. Francis scored 34 of the next 42 points, including a 16-2 run to close out the first set, to defeat the Knights 25-20, 25-16 in the first of a possible four meetings this season between the teams.
The two teams could meet in the finals at Rich East this weekend, are scheduled to play again later this season in Palos Heights and could cross each other’s paths in the Class 3A Joliet Catholic Supersectional.
Chicago Christian (13-5, 3-1) will be the underdog in every match, but that doesn’t bother coach James Garcia.
“I like people thinking of us as the underdog and not giving us the opportunity or whatever it is that we can beat a team like this,” Garcia said. “We came in here, we focused on our serve-receive the first game and our defense was pretty good in the beginning, too.
“I think they were surprised that we had the lead,” he added. “But then we lost focus. That’s when things started to turn. I keep telling the girls that’s what we have to focus on, that we can make a good pass so we do run our offense. When that doesn’t happen, that’s where that run happens.”
Molly Haggerty (9 kills, 2 blocks, 5 digs) was the person most responsible for the Spartans’ comeback, knocking down all five of her first-set kills after the hosts fell behind by eight points.
“We had a bad warmup, and having a bad warmup is not good at all,” Haggerty said. “I just try to do my best to contribute to the team. We need everyone to help contribute. That’s what needs to happen every game, not just when it really needs to happen.”
Haggerty and St. Francis (16-1, 5-0) continued the run into Set 2, building an 18-6 lead before Chicago Christian closed to within 19-15 behind Jessica Krygsheld (3 kills), Leah Kamp (4 kills, block) and Samantha Kubik (7 assists, 2 kills, 2 aces).
But two kills by Mary Boken (4 kills, block, ace) sparked a 5-0 run by the hosts, who closed out the match on a kill by Maddie Haggerty (5 kills).
Sam Dubiel had 14 digs and Natalie Murison added 12 assists and two aces for St. Francis. Emily Workman added four kills and five assists for Chicago Christian.
“We fought super-hard the first game,” Workman said. “We came in this gym knowing that we wanted to win really bad. But they are a team that’s always been really good. They always have super big girls, and we’re not the biggest team out there.
“So I was proud of our team playing like we did the first game, and even the second game when we were down by so much we still came back and fought the whole time,” Workman added. “We didn’t give up at all. I was happy with the way we played.”