Boys Volleyball: St Edward battles past Streamwood
Updated: May 2, 2012 9:59PM
First-year St. Edward coach Claudia Sandoval wasn’t quite sure how her team would adapt to her tough, no-nonsense approach this season. She can stop worrying because the Green Wave seem just fine with it. St. Edward continued its winning ways on Wednesday with a 25-22, 25-20 win over visiting Streamwood.
“I am their third coach in three years, so I wasn’t sure how it was going to work out,” Sandoval said. “I can be very strict, but I think they’ve taken to my style pretty well. The biggest thing is they all want to win and they have worked very hard since day one.”
The Green Wave (9-1) trailed by as many as five points in Game 1 and were down 20-16 late, but rallied with a 9-2 run to close out the game. Mark Sink started the comeback with a kill and later added an ace during a four-point service run. John Shepherd and Bob French also had big kills during the stretch.
“They never get down on themselves,” Sandoval said. ‘‘They just kept encouraging one another. We have a lot of leaders on our team like [Sink] and [French] that really step up when we need it the most.”
Another key to turning around Game 1 for St. Edward was finding a way to keep Streamwood’s Ryan Bellamy in check. The 6-5 senior had eight kills early on to help the Sabres get out in front, but was held without a kill during St. Edward’s pivotal closing run.
“He’s a fantastic hitter,” French said. “So we knew we had to start getting our blocks up faster and make sure we covered the lines on him. We didn’t panic when we fell behind. We just had to stay calm and stick to the fundamentals”
The Green Wave carried the momentum of the comeback over to Game 2 as they jumped out to a 13-4 lead. French played a big role again with an ace and huge block kill on a spike attempt by Bellamy.
‘‘Coming back in Game 1 gave us a huge boost,” French said. “I always try to do my part to keep things positive, even when we get down. We all try to always keep the energy high and we just keep feeding off one another.”
Once Streamwood (6-18) lost the momentum in game one they were never quite able to recover. The Sabres managed to pull to within three points late in game two, but could get no closer.
“I think our boys got a little to confident in Game 1,” Streamwood coach Lisa Vazzana said. “It doesn’t matter who you are playing or how much you’re up by you can never let your guard down. Once we lost the momentum we lost our confidence. We got quiet and timid and they outhustled us.”
Bellamy finished with a game-high 13 kills and added 11 digs. Phil Lewy had seven kills and 16 digs for the Sabres. Parimal Vyas had 20 assists.
Sink and French had five kills each to lead the Green Wave.