Wilmington, NC - Cape Fear women's volleyball won its final home game of the season, defeating USC Lancaster, 3-0.
"A big win," said head coach Emily Coleman. "We hadn't really seen them much, so we didn't know a whole lot about their program, but a big solid win to cap the season off."
The Sea Devils opened the first set with a successful block by sophomore Tressa Amico. They jumped out to an early 5-1 lead, but Lancaster would get two points after Cape Fear pushed two shot out of bounds. The next portion of the set would be close, with Cape Fear maintaining a small lead.
Cape Fear would attempt to run away with the lead, but errors would keep the Lancers in it. Lancaster would be unable to threaten, however, and after the Sea Devils cleaned up their play and took a 19-13 lead, the Lancers were forced to call timeout. Cape Fear looked primed to run away with the set, but Lancers would make one last attempt at closing the scoreline, cutting the lead to 20-16. That would be as close as they'd get, as the home team would dig in and take the set 25-19.
The second set started much like the first, with Cape Fear gaining an early lead, but the Lancers kept it close. Then, thanks to better communication, the Sea Devils would take control of the set, and jump out to a 14-5 lead. Lancaster would get a few points back, and cut the score to 14-9. That would be the closest it would get, as Cape Fear would score 11 of the final 12 points to take the set 25-10.
Momentum would carry over into the third set for the home team, as Cape Fear would take a commanding 12-4 early lead. They were relentless in their attacks, making it difficult for Lancaster, and forcing them to play defensive.
However, the Lancers would find an opportunity and gain a few points back, cutting the lead to 15-11, and forcing Cape Fear to call timeout. They would respond following it, going up 21-13. Lancaster would not go away, however, and cut the lead to five before Cape Fear would score again. A few errors, namely poor serves, would give Lancaster easy points. Ultimately, Cape Fear would hold on, taking the set 25-17 to win the match.
The Lancers made it difficult throughout the match, but Cape Fear proved too much.
Before tonight's match, seven sophomores -- Tressa Amico, Faryn Salazar, Chelsea Bailey, Bailey Toman, Amber Tyndall, Kassie McRostie, and Kacie Markle -- were honored. Coleman was proud of the way they have played the last two season. "Tonight, especially, they all stepped up. I'm going to miss these girls immensely. They have contributed everything they had to this season, and the year before."
The Sea Devils also ended the season on a 16 game winning streak, the longest in school history. They also did not lose a game at home all season.
"I think it says we are determined, we are focused," said Coleman. "I've been here about four years now so I've been able to set my expectations, and they believe in it, and they've bought in."
With the regular season wrapped up, the Sea Devils will move on to the Region 10 conference tournament next week, November 4th and 5th, at Wake Tech Community College in Raleigh.
Courtesy of Nick Denning