Boys Volleyball: Vernon Hills too tough for Zion-BentonVernon Hills-4/20/12, Fri./Vernon Hills High School
Matthew Isaacs, of Zion with the hit vs. Vernon Hills Friday night.
| Joe Shuman~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 20, 2012 8:44PM
The boys volleyball teams at Vernon Hills and Zion-Benton are closer on paper than they are on the court.
After Friday they each hold 3-1 records in North Suburban Conference play, and Zion is 12-3 overall while Vernon Hills is 14-2.
But that’s on paper.
On the court Friday, the host Cougars blew out the Zee-Bees 25-13, 25-15, allowing Zion to score just five points on serve in the match.
“They served tough and we didn’t pass well, which made it a short night,” said Z-B coach Jacob Carlson. “We were looking forward to this game. We just didn’t perform tonight.”
Zion-Benton returned five starters from last year’s 18-win team and that’s been reflected in the great record.
But Vernon Hills is the four-time defending conference champion, and the Cougars are thinking high-five after this win.
“We’ve experienced some turmoil,” said Vernon Hills coach Chris Curry, whose team started the season 13-0, then lost to Barrington and unheralded Libertyville in the last week. “We showed a lot of character and our leaders stepped up.”
Leading the Cougars on Friday were Martin Nienczewski (eight kills), Thomas Robinson (eight kills) and Ryan Opitz (16 assists).
Against that, Zion had no answer.
For Zion, Josh Hieb had five kills and Matt Isaacs had four.
“If we can continue to serve and receive well, we can do a lot of damage,” said Curry, who only returned two players from last year’s team.
Stevenson now is the league’s only unbeaten team, with Zion, Vernon Hills and Warren within striking distance.