Foran overcomes Law spikers
Pass, set, spike is a must-have sequence to be successful, and the Foran High girls volleyball team was at the top of its game in those areas in its 3-0 victory over Jonathan Law on Spike Out Leukemia Night at the James Richetelli Sr. Gymnasium on Wednesday.
“Tonight was the first time we used the libero for all three games and we played very well in all areas except for our serving,” Lion coach Julie Johnson said after the 25-21, 25-18, 25-21 SCC Hammonasset Division victory.
“Dani [Kemp] had a great match passing and that let Rebekah [DeRosa] distribute the ball more evenly, which is what we’ve been getting better at every match.”
DeRosa had 37 assists from her setter position.
Abby Amann had 16 kills and Fallon Bevino 11 winning spikes, as Foran advanced its record to 6-3.
“We’re still a work in progress with new players and other players in new positions,” Law coach Stacy Luch said of her Eagles (3-6).
“Our defense has gotten better, and I like the way we served tonight.
“They didn’t give up. The players know we need five more wins to get to states, and to do so we have to fight for every point.”
Foran was able to take big leads in every game, with Bryzy Gonski, Jess Harkness and Kaylee Ciolino joining Kemp (18 digs) in the back row.
Law, led by the never-say-quit defensive performances by Caitlin Prete, Rachel Hannon, Taylor Doran, Jenna Bernard and Brooke Bonetti, made things difficult down the stretch of each set.
Law’s ability to get in its serves, and Foran’s propensity for serving outside the box, helped the Eagles make up ground on the scoreboard.
Extended rallies marked play throughout, with Hayley Soulier, Jessica Ruiz and Tarah Kelly leading Law at net.
Harkness served Foran to a 5-2 lead in game one, before Law’s active setter Colleen Bogucki took a pass from Prete and found Ruiz, who won the sideout with a blast through a blocker.
A Hannon dig and a Bernard block kept the next point alive, but Bevino drilled home a winner.
It was 12-8 after one rotation and Prete’s hit through a block gave Law a chance.
Janae Owen came on in relief in the front row for Foran and the sophomore tipped home a side out.
Soulier, off a back set from Bogucki, got that point back.
DeRosa, the heart and soul of Foran’s attack, stepped to the service stripe and the senior put a three-point run together.
Kemp and Prete had a battle of wills through the long second point, which ended with Kemp getting a return to fall for an 18-11 lead.
Ruiz, a sniper at the net, served two winners before another Lion reserve stepped forward.
Paige Raucci, a junior, saw her spike misplayed and DeRosa found an open middle with a dump pass,.
Law countered, as Hannon’s dig and Bernard’s ace made it 22-17.
DeRosa’s great running set to Bevino got the serve back, but the Lions’ sixth missed serve gave Law another opportunity.
Prete had a winner before Gonski’s great pass from the sideline led to Owen finding the corner open with a spike.
Kelly fought off the first game point with a crosscourt kill, but Amann tallied the final point with a kill.
Foran raced to a 13-2 lead in game two.
DeRosa had a five-point run before Bugucki’s relentless effort was rewarded with a side out.
Soulier put Law’s longest stretchfrom the stripe together with a four-point run, with Prete scoring two points.
At 17-9, Bernard served four winners, and after a series of side outs, Soulier and Bernard combined on a block and Kelly’s great pass resulted in another winner.
It was 21-18 when DeRosa found an opening for another push pass.
She tacked on two winners, the second coming on a fine play and spike by Lion sophomore Kayla Ellis.
One of DeRosa’s four aces closed out game two at 25-18.
Great individual efforts were the story in Foran’s 25-21 game three victory.
Raucci had a fine bump set off a tough pass that led to a Bevino kill at 4-4.
Ciolino showed off her service ability in games one and two for the Lions.
Doran answered for Law with three outstanding plays on the next two rallies.
Bevino, whose overall skills get overshadowed by her lethal hitting, took control at 8-6 with four straight service winners.
Ruiz ended the run with a block near the post.
At 17-12, Raucci tipped home a winner, but Bogucki got that point back with a fine play at net.
Ruiz had a kill at 22-20, but a Bevino ace and a disputed match-winning spike completed the battle.