Plainfield Central downs rival NorthPlainfield North's Emily McHugh (10) and Alison Kimmel (6) attempt to block a spike from Plainfield Central's Elizabeth Hyland (11) at Tuesday night's game between Plainfield Central and Plainfield North. | Paul James Bergstrom~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 6, 2011 9:22PM
Championship banners that hang in Plainfield North’s gymnasium include three Southwest Prairie Conference titles the girls volleyball program won in the last five years.
With that kind of record, it’s easy to understand why the 25-20, 25-17 victory Plainfield Central earned Tuesday night at Plainfield North was so satisfying for the Wildcats.
“This is the one that feels the best, most definitely,’’ senior Erin Hyland said. “It’s the whole high school rivalry thing. When you have a team that you want to beat so badly and you’re working so hard, it just feels that much better.’’
Hyland and her sister, Elizabeth, a freshman outside hitter, played important roles for Plainfield Central. Erin finished with five kills, three blocks and two aces and Elizabeth recorded six kills.
“This is what we’ve been working for,’’ Erin Hyland said. “They’re our conference rival so it always feels good to beat them. This shows all that we’ve done so far.’’
Plainfield Central (3-5, 1-1) also had key contributions from Dana Peterson (eight digs) and Taryn Trubich (10 assists, three blocks).
“To play our game the entire time and never let up, continue communicating and working as a team, that’s something we’ve been waiting for,’’ Plainfield Central coach Jessica Clark said. “Everyone was consistent. We’ve been working on eliminating our errors, and that’s exactly what they did.’’
In the first game, three straight Plainfield North points closed the gap to 24-20 before Casey Stachelski recorded the game winner for Central after faking a set. In Game 2, late points by Erin Hyland and Victoria Swigart and two North errors led to the final score.
“It was a clear indication that we need some leadership skills right now,’’ Plainfield North coach Tracey Marshall said of the match. “We have a lot of upperclassmen, but the upperclassmen have never been put in this role.’’
Plainfield North (3-4, 0-1) was led by Alex Marszalek (six kills, four digs, two aces), Alison Kimmel (four kills, three digs) and Kate Federico (four kills, three digs). The Tigers’ next match is Thursday at Romeoville.
“It’s the beginning of the season,’’ Marshall said. “We’re just getting our footing. It’s a long ways to go.’’
Plainfield Central continues its conference schedule with a match Thursday at Plainfield South.
“This was the kick-start to our conference season,’’ Erin Hyland said. “This is definitely going to get us motivated.’’