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West Shamokin girls soccer team enjoys team effort in victory

| Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012, 11:18 p.m.
West Shamokin's Amanda Wensel (right) goes up to spike the ball around the block of Riverview's Alison Hodges during a 3-2 win for the Lady Wolves Tuesday night at Riverview High School.
West Shamokin's Alecia Calhoun attacks the ball during a 3-2 win over host Riverview Tuesday night. Calhoun had seven kills, including the match-winner.
Riverview's Arden Fisher leaps for a spike during a match against West Shamokin in Octobert 2012. Bill West | Leader Times
Steelers running Rashard Mendenhall during practice on the south side Sept. 2012. Chaz Palla | Tribune Review

West Shamokin's girls volleyball team waited for the day when its starters would solve their chemistry troubles.

The Wolves believe they witnessed a breakthrough Tuesday night during their critical Section 1-A win over host Riverview.

West Shamokin (6-2, 6-2) edged the Raiders, 3-2, in a battle for second place in the section. Stars for both sides shined: Edinboro recruit Jill Glover registered a match-high 21 kills and served four aces, while Robert Morris recruit Arden Fisher had 17 kills, three blocks and an ace. But the Wolves prevailed in large part because of the performances of their less-heralded members.

“We've had our issues, but we finally got over it tonight and played together,” said middle hitter Alecia Calhoun, who finished with one block and seven kills, including the match-winner that ended Game 5 at 17-15.

Calhoun and middle hitter Amanda Wensel provided an effective presence up front, particularly after Game 1, a 25-19 win for Riverview (7-2, 4-2). Fisher fired away with seven kills in the opening game, but she had four or fewer the rest of the way.

“We were a little off at first, and then we decided we wanted it,” said Wensel, who finished with six kills, two blocks and two aces.

West Shamokin won Game 2, 25-23, and appeared to maintain its momentum in Game 3, jumping out to a 7-3 lead and later holding a 16-12 advantage. But Renee Ault and Ault finished with 12 kills, and Marissa Katic had five kills and two aces. But the trio of hitters had fewer opportunities because of Riverview's inconsistent passing.

“We're normally a strong passing team, but it was off, so we couldn't get the sets we needed,” said Riverview coach DeAnn Sloan, whose Raiders defeated West Shamokin, 3-1, earlier this season.

West Shamokin endured numerous errors as well. But so many of the Wolves redeemed themselves elsewhere in the match. Outside hitter Kelly Clowser had five kills, including two in the final game. Setter Jen Notto not only distributed the ball well, she registered two kills and served two aces. Libero Kristen Templeton stood tall in the face of Fisher's blasts, and she also served two aces.

“We've been stressing that it's a must that (each player) steps up,” West Shamokin coach Justin Nolder said. “We have a saying: ‘It's not your neighbor, it's you.' … This was the match in which we had the most productivity from not just one player, not two players, but all eight players in the rotation.”

Bill West is staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at wwest@tribweb.com or 724-543-1303.

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