Ashburn, Va (October 21, 2015) – Monday night the Stone Bridge Bulldogs hosted the Loudoun County Raiders in one of the biggest volleyball nights of the season. The Raiders entered 14-1, their only loss a five game upset to Dominion. The Bulldogs were 15-2, undefeated at home and coming off a three-game sweep of Briar Woods.
The match began with a series of long rallies as both teams started in top form. County senior Taylor Borup played solid defense including passing a ball bouncing straight down off the ceiling, one of three County kept alive off the ceiling in the first two games. Both sides tied it up at 13-13 and traded points until 18-18. Stone Bridge jumped to a 22-18 lead causing the Raiders to use both time outs to try and slow down Stone Bridge. An ace and a kill by Raider juniors Rachael Cullen and Hannah Aycock closed the lead to 22-20 but a timely kill by Stone Bridge Senior Caitlin Zura stopped the comeback and game one ended with a kill by Bulldog junior Gabbie Scudder. Stone Bridge took set one 25-20.
Game two opened with Loudoun County’s offense in full form. Two kills by Borup, two block kills by Raider senior Rachel Voketaitis led to a Raider 10-5 lead and a Stone Bridge timeout. Stone Bridge
Ashley Dunlop joined the match in the second set and dramatically made her presence known with a down the line kill to allow Stone Bridge to pull to an 11-7 deficit. Another Dunlop kill and a Zura ace cut the Raider lead to 14-11. Taylor Borup pulled one of the plays of the night when her attack was blocked by Stone Bridge senior blocking sensation Dejia Danhi. While Danhi’s 78 blocks places her first in Virginia’s 5A stat leaders, Borup was able to dig Danhi’s block and then get a kill from the quick pass over the net.
While Stone Bridge started many rallies, Loudoun County kept ending them before the Bulldogs could tie it up. At 17-13 County, Dunlop served two beautiful jump serves that Loudoun County watched drop on the back line and the right side line to pull within two. County sophomore Rebecca Frey had a nice mid-court dump to keep County up 18-17. Danhi had one of her team high five blocks to tie the game up at 22-22. Zura’s ace gave Stone Bridge it’s first lead of the game at 23-22. While County Freshman Ashley Rubino’s kill tied it up at 23-23 another kill by Dunlop and a game winning ace by Scudder gave Stone Bridge a second set win at 25-23.
Set three started Stone Bridge’s way with a Danhi dink, three blocks and two Bulldog junior Riley Gill aces giving Stone Bridge a 10-7 lead. Raider’s Aycock had an impressive cross court kill to slow the Bulldog rally but a corner kill by Bulldog senior Angela Tender made it 17-10, a lead that was too much for the Raiders to overcome. Zura, whose twelve total match points led the Bulldogs, closed the game and match with a kill and a 25-20 Stone Bridge win.
After the match Loudoun County Raider head coach Sherrilyn Hanna reflected on the loss stating her team needs to shore up some weak spots and play to their strengths, one of them being senior Taylor Borup. County’s sites are on Dominion to retake first place in Conference 21 East.
Stone Bridge coach Jill Raschiatore could not remember when Stone Bridge last swept County but was sure it was not in this decade. Most of the matchesbetween the two powerhouses have been five game marathons. Raschiatore was happy with the girls’ approach to tonight’s match, showing calm and keeping an even keel but excited about playing Loudoun County. She also praised her six seniors who as a group delivered 49 points in kills, blocks, and aces. Stone Bridge’s focus is the remaining conference games.
To view photos from this match click here.
Stone Bridge (16-2) travels to Tuscarora tomorrow for a 7:15 match
Loudoun County (14-2) travels to Woodgrove next Tuesday for a 7:00 match