Girls Volleyball: New Trier lays Mother McAuley to rest, proceeds to title matchMother McAuley's Ryann DeJarld goes up against New Trier's Taylor Tashima during their volleyball state championship semi-final game at Redbird Arena in Normal, IL Friday, November 9, 2012. | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 10, 2012 4:47PM
NORMAL – The winds of change weren’t very subtle when they blew into Redbird Arena at the start of Set 2 in the Class 4A semifinal match Friday between Mother McAuley and New Trier.
New Trier, a team back on its heels and not following its master plan, took the Mighty Macs by storm.
“We didn’t come out the way we wanted to come out, but we finished the way we wanted to finish,” Trevians coach Hannah Hsieh said simply after a stunning victory put them into Saturday’s title match.
After a slow start, Senior Brittani Steinberg pounded out 15 kills for New Trier (39-1). Emmy Friedler (9 digs), Haley Fauntleroy (6 block assists) and Taylor Tashima (5 block assists) led a Trevians defense that shut down McAuley’s offense.
The Mighty Macs (35-5) were paced by Ryann DeJarld (11 kills, 9 digs), Molly Geary (6 kills), Carla Cahill (11 digs) and Courtney Joyce (25 assists).
The first set and the last two couldn’t have been any more different.
McAuley began to break it open at 5-5, when DeJarld put down a kill and then went to the service line, where she served for five more points. During that outburst she landed two aces, while Geary added a kill. The Mighty Macs went on to lead by as many as nine points on three different occasions.
“We were just back on our heels,” Tashima (24 assists) said. “The game plan was to be aggressive and intense. We didn’t execute in the first game, but we came through in the second and third with our blocks, with our hits, with our defense.
“Our defense is what won us this game. I mean, offense wins games, but defense wins championships. This (weekend) is for the state title.”
Down 1-0 in Set 2 after an ace serve by Cahill, the Trevians responded with 6-2 run. Steinberg, a 5-11 senior, kept finding more and more holes from the outside. Fauntleroy, a 6-3 junior, made her biggest moves against McAuley with her aggressiveness at the net.
“For me, it was pretty much all about intimidation,” Fauntleroy said. “Calling out the blocks through the net. Pointing to the hitters and trying to make eye contact with them so that they knew that I had the confidence I could shut them down with my blocks.”
Joyce said that the Mighty Macs didn’t particularly notice Fauntleroy’s mannerisms, but very noticeable was the frustration that they showed after being blocked several times.
“We had several missed serves and our hitters were not putting away balls we needed them to put away,” McAuley coach Jen DeJarld said. “I think just started worrying too much. Defensively, blocking and digging, we were step too slow.”
In all, the Trevians recorded 18 block assists. McAuley also made 17 unforced errors in Set 2, and 30 for the match.
New Trier trailed just once in Set 3, at 2-1. It was 13-9 Trevians when they went on a 7-1 run, with four of the points coming on blocks by combinations of Fauntleroy, Maggie Carragher and Tashima.
But mostly, they rode the powerful hitting arm of Steinberg into the championship match.
“I feel I do have that power,” Steinberg said. “But I think that everybody stepped up tonight. Everybody played amazingly and the game of their lives.
“I think that, obviously, there is a lot of pressure being a senior captain. But I’m a person who likes pressure. I like to have that drive. It really helps me stay confident on the court.”