Frontier sweeps Wildcats, moves to semifinals

For The Recorder
Monday, November 06, 2017

SOUTH DEERFIELD — Lauren Davenport played poorly the last time the Frontier Regional School girls’ volleyball team took the floor against Lee High School.

“I was out of it,” she said. “It was pretty rough.”

She refined her technique in practice then exorcised that game’s frustration in a 25-7, 25-9, 25-23 win over No. 9 Mount Greylock Regional High School Monday in the Western Massachusetts Division III quarterfinals. Top-seeded Frontier (13-8) will host No. 4 Turners Falls (19-3) at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday.

“I think that (practice) helped this game ’cause it gave me more confidence and set me back on track,” Davenport said.

She finished with 17 kills and just two errors in 29 attempts, swinging with authority at both the floor and, if necessary, Greylock defenders. Six of those kills helped Frontier build an 11-2 lead in the first set. The Red Hawks cruised to a 25-7 win, then jumped out to a 5-1 lead in Set 2.

Greylock (11-10) fought back to trail 7-6 before Davenport put Frontier up 8-6 with a kill and stepped to the service line. She served nine straight points, including five straight aces at one point, to put Frontier up 17-7. Davenport finished with seven aces in the match.

Frontier’s junior varsity coach Courtney Parent indicates a “spot” the Red Hawks should aim for when serving. Davenport focuses on that area of the court at the service line.

“I’m not really thinking of how to serve or what to do, just that spot,” Davenport said.

After her run ended, Frontier sided out to get the ball back to Grace Randall, who served six straight points to build a 24-7 lead.

“We don’t really see much jump serving,” Greylock coach Meaghan Albert said. “They weren’t really prepared for it.”

The Mounties took their first lead, 1-0, in the second set off an ace and eventually built it to 8-4. Frontier changed to a 6-2 offensive system in the third set to practice running it, and the Red Hawks lost their rhythm.

“Sometimes just being different is unsettling, I think,” Frontier coach Sean MacDonald said. “It’s not even that anyone is doing anything wrong, it’s just different.”

Frontier rallied to tie the set at 11 and 13 before Ashley Telega skied for a block and a 14-13 lead the Red Hawks wouldn’t relinquish.

“I think it really fired us up, and once we got back we really got into it,” Telega said.

Frontier reached match point at 24-19, but Greylock scored four points in a row to make it 24-23. MacDonald called a timeout, and Selayna Bathurst, who finished with 12 kills and 11 digs, ended the match when her attack deflected off Greylock’s libero and out of bounds.