Boys Volleyball: Benet
Updated: May 23, 2012 10:42PM
The Benet boys volleyball team found its secret weapon in senior Nathan Parisi and on Wednesday the Redwings pulled off a mild upset over the host and No. 6 Hilltoppers to win the Glenbard West Regional.
The sixth-seeded Redwings won in three sets 22-25, 25-21, 25-22 over the third-seeded Hilltoppers and advanced to the Wheaton Warrenville South Sectional semifinals against Glenbard East on Friday.
Parisi led the Redwings’ balanced attack with 13 kills. But there were also major offensive contributions by Bobby Wehrli with eight kills and two blocks, Matt Conroy with seven kills and three blocks, Luke Ladowski with six kills and three blocks and Garrett Metzger with five kills and three blocks.
“Nathan Parisi had the most outstanding match of his career,” said Benet coach Amy Van Eekeren. “His intensity was amazing. And as a team we knew we had to come with our best game because Glenbard West is so strong. And we had great blocking, aggressive serving, we knew what we wanted to run and we kept our attack varied.”
Parisi was a starter on the right side as a junior, but this year he usually comes off the bench. Late in Tuesday’s semifinal win against Naperville North he came in and had two clutch kills and that earned him more minutes against the Hilltoppers.
“I went in in the front row yesterday and played hard,” said Parisi.” And the rotation worked, so coach kept me in.”
Parisi’s performance was part of the plan to keep the offense unpredictable.
“We needed to mix up the offense,” said Parisi. “We had to spread the middles and keep their middles honest, make sure they were jumping and then come in with the outside attack. This was a big win. And once you get past the regional, you want to win it all.”
The Hilltoppers (30-7) had the lead for most of Game 1, but the Redwings (28-8) got to within a point near the end 23-22 on a Parisi Kill.
In Games 2 and 3, it was the Redwings who kept a lead mostly between three and six points, all the way to the end.
Ian Lawson had 17 kills to lead the Hilltoppers.
“We couldn’t get in the flow, especially in Game 2,” said Glenbard West coach Christine Mayer. “That was completely out of character. But give credit to Benet, we did nothing with their middles.”
Pat Dougherty set for 37 assists and had eight digs for Benet and libero Kevin Weithers had 15 digs.
“This kind of performance has been in our kids all season,” said Van Eekeren. “You know it’s there and for it to come out at this point in the season is phenomenal.”