SHERWOOD — The Sherwood High School volleyball team didn't get off to a very promising start in its match with Newberg.
But, wow, what a finish.
The Lady Bowmen, after falling 25-9 to the Tigers in the opening set, came roaring back to win the next three sets, by scores of 25-20, 25-18 and 25-19, to get a 3-1 win in the Pacific Conference match played Sept. 17 at Sherwood High School.
"Oh this is huge," Sherwood senior outside hitter Alli Douglass said after the victory. "We've been playing all season, and haven't had much success yet, but we've really been bonding as a team, and working hard in practices, and it finally showed up tonight."
"This is really big," Sherwood senior libero Piper Harrop said. "Newberg was undefeated (in conference), so it's going to help with our momentum for the rest of the season."
With the loss, Newberg moved to 2-1 in conference play with the setback (8-3 overall), putting the Tigers in third place in the conference standings, one match behind co-leaders Glencoe and McMinnville, who are each 3-0.
With the victory, Sherwood evened its conference record at 2-2 with the victory (3-5 overall), putting the Lady Bowmen in fourth place in the conference standings.
"We're continuing to work hard, and, hopefully, we'll keep getting better throughout the season," Douglass said.
The Tigers, in the opening set of the match at Sherwood, took control early. Back-to-back kills by freshman outside hitter Sophia Gregoire-Salagean gave Newberg a quick 3-1 lead, and the Tigers wouldn't trail the rest of the set.
With Newberg leading 11-8, and with senior setter Lauren Griswold serving, the Tigers reeled off eight straight points. Petersen and junior Brynna Geibel each had a kill, senior Becca Upchurch had a block and Griswold had an ace serve during the scoring spree, which gave Newberg a 19-8 lead.
Then, after getting a sideout kill by Geibel, the Tigers took off again. With Geibel serving, Newberg scored five straight points — including a tip and a block by Petersen, a kill by Gregoire-Salagean and an ace serve — to close out a 25-9 opening-set win.
But that didn't seem to bother Sherwood.
"We normally start slow," Harrop said. "For some reason, we like to. But that's how we build our momentum, and once we get that big kill, or big kill, that carries us for the rest of the game."
The Lady Bowmen got going, in a big way, in the second set. With Harrop serving, coming up with a pair of aces, Sherwood scored four straight points to take an early 7-2 lead.
Newberg closed the lead to 19-16, but Sherwood took off again. An ace by sophomore Emma Wagner, back-to-back kills by senior Natalie Kapuniai-Ryan and a back-row kill by Harrop, off a set by senior Allison Fiarito helped the Lady Bowmen close out a 25-20 second-set win.
"Our team just bonded together, and we fought," Douglass said.
Newberg tried to regain momentum in the third set, grabbing an early 8-5 lead. But Sherwood would have nothing of it. With the Tigers leading 11-10, and with Wagner serving, Sherwood scored six straight points to claim a 16-11 advantage. Kapuaniai-Ryan had a kill, senior Josie Wilson had a block and Wagner had an ace in the scoring spree.
Wilson added on two more blocks, and Douglass had a pair of kills, tho help Sherwood wrap up a 25-18 third-set victory.
"Josie Wilson's blocking definitely was a big thing for us," Harrop said.
The Lady Bowmen carried their momentum into the fourth set. With Fiarito serving, Sherwood scored the first three points of the set, and didn't trail the rest of the way.
With Harrop serving, Sherwood scored six straight points, two coming on blocks by Douglass, to open up an 11-3 lead. Kills by senior Evan Parent Korsness and Wagner helped the Lady Bowmen go up 15-8.
Newberg closed the gap to 19-16, but Sherwood wouldn't be denied. A sideout kill and an ace by Douglass, a back-row kill by Harrop and, finally, a block and a kill by Wilson helped Sherwood close out the 25-19 fourth-set win — and the match.
"It was just sheer joy, because we hadn't had a moment like that, yet," Harrop said of the final point. "We needed that. That will help propel us for the rest of the season, knowing what this feels like. This was the funnest. This is why I play volleyball. I couldn't ask for anything else."
"Oh, my gosh. It was just adrenaline," Douglass said. "It was exciting. It was really good."
"We're a family," Harrop said of the turnaround following the first set. "We all love each other so much, and I think being able to get our mistakes out of the way helped us really pull together."
The Lady Bowmen will return to conference play on Tuesday, when they host Century in a match starting at 6:45 p.m.
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