MIDDLETOWN >> Volleyball is a game of runs.
Mercy and Lyman Hall definitely proved that true Monday night at Mercy High School where the Tigers defeated the Trojans 3-1 in the SCC quarterfinals.
After Mercy won the first set 25-20 where neither team really dominated, Lyman Hall went on a 9-1 run to start the second. Shytasia Williams recorded a kill to start the set for the Tigers, but an ace from Naomi Rascati and two straight kills by Stephanie Napierkowski gave the Trojans a commanding lead.
“I have to give Lyman Hall a lot of credit, they are a very good team,” said Mercy coach Sarah Kelley.
No. 2 Mercy (17-2) started to climb back into the set after kills by Abigail Nagy (12 kills) and Williams (12 digs and eight kills) and after scoring seven out of eight, Mercy trailed 14-11.
“We got away from playing our game, we sat back and waited for the other team to make mistakes instead of playing our game like we did at the beginning of the set,” said Lyman Hall coach Danielle Bourne.
Morgan Cahill (11 kills) recorded a tip kill and Mercy didn’t look back.
Nagy held the serve for 12 straight points, including five aces to guide the Tigers all the way back to a 25-16 second set victory.
The third set went in almost the opposite direction.
No. 7 Lyman Hall (11-8) never put more than four points between them and Mercy and never went on a run of more than four, but scored 10 of 14 right in the middle of the set to take the lead. A kill by Kim Petit sealed the 25-21 Trojans third set win.
“My girls came in here ready to play, we’ve been working all season to be ready for the postseason,” said Bourne.
Lyman Hall had the momentum.
They scored seven of the first 10 points capped off by a big block from Rascati, but Mercy fought back. Lyman Hall never backed down taking a 13-8 lead.
“We weren’t expecting to get blocked so much, their middle blockers was right on point,” said Kelley.
Mercy’s final run – 17 of the final 25 points in a 25-21 fourth set win – won the match.
“We’ve been a team all season that likes a challenge,” said Kelley. “We like to give our fans something to watch.”
Mercy advances to the SCC semifinals Wednesday night where they will host No. 3 Amity. The two teams have not yet played this season.