Ridgewood splits pair, ready for regionals
The Ridgewood girls volleyball team took on a pair of Metro Suburban Conference opponents, hoping to gain some momentum heading into the final week of the regular season. Unfortunately, the Rebels were unable to do so.
The Rebels took on Glenbard South in Norridge Oct. 11 and lost in two sets, 25-16, 26-24. Mallory McCormack had 19 digs, three blocks and one ace to lead Ridgewood. Dani Rzewnicki (8 assists, 3 digs) and Marlena Warjas (10 digs) also contributed for the Rebels.
The Rebels tried to bounce back two days later but fell to Riverside-Brookfield in three sets, 25-23, 25-27,16-25. Leading the way for Ridgewood was Rzewnicki, who had 19 assists, 13 digs and five aces. Meg Aliaj added 10 digs and two aces. Jessica Rzewnicki had 11 digs, 15 assists and one ace. McCormack and Warjas added 30 and 22 digs, respectively.
“It was a great match. The wind got knocked out of us after losing the second match,” said Rebels’ head coach Dave Wlodarczyk. “We played well all week. We’re playing better than we have all year, we just keep getting losses.”
There wasn’t a lot of shame in losing to Glenbard South and Riverside-Brookfield.
“Those are two of the top teams in the conference and we’re right there with them,” Wlodarczyk said. “We’re in good shape. We’re peaking at the right time and I’m thrilled to death with the way we’re playing.”
The Rebels finished the week with an overall record of 17-13, which puts them one win shy of a school record.
“It has surpassed my expectations by far,” said Wlodarczyk regarding his team’s performance up to this point. “It’s nice to see them playing so hard.”
Next up for the Rebels is a match with Timothy Christian on Oct. 20 in the regular season finale. From there, they participate in the Wauconda Regionals. The No. 10 seed Rebels take on No. 5 seed Lakes on Oct. 25.
“They’re another top team in the conference,” said Wlodarczyk regarding Timothy Christian. “They’ve beaten us before so we have to play the way we have been (in the past week) to win.”
Wlodarczyk knows it will not be easy for his team to advance out of regionals. If the Rebels beat Lakes, they take on No. 2 Wauconda.
“I want to win the regional (championship),” said Wlodarczyk. “(But) we have a rough road ahead. There are no easy games and we will not look past anybody. We have to play at the top of our game.”