By Walter J. O’Neill, Jr.
Rules of high school volleyball are a team must win the best of three sets, with each set having 25 points to determine the winner. On October 11, the Lady Green Wave of Long Branch hosted and lost 2-0 to Freehold Borough.
It was the second time this season that the two teams faced each other in a Shore Conference A North divisional game. The first meeting was a 2-1 win for Freehold Borough back on September 21. “We have had a tough season as the girls are still learning how to finish hard,” said Nemeil Navarro, head coach. Long Branch is 0-14 overall this season and 0-11 in the A North. “We have talent, we have players, we just need to get that mental ability to finish strong.”
All season long the Green Wave have been in competitive matches. “The team’s strength lies in our service game,” said Navarro. Leading the Lady Green Wave with 36 service points is Maya Moses, senior. She did not play in the second meeting with the Colonials.
Volleyball has an important part of the game played at the net. “Our biggest weakness is blocking. The lack of blocking creates tremendous pressure on the passing game,” said Navarro. In the second game against Freehold Borough the long rallies were won by the Colonials. “They had the ability to hit over the net.”
Josselyn Cantres, junior, has been responsible for a lot of the Green Wave kills this season. A kill in volleyball is recorded any time an opponent cannot return an attack that is directly related to the opponent not getting the ball back over the net. “She finds a way to set the ball to our hitters despite the ball being misplayed on the first pass,” Navarro said. Cantres leads the team in assists with 72.
Another junior at Long Branch is Lynia Dixson. “She leads the team in kills with 55, and is second in digs with 40, and second in service points with 33,” added Navarro. A dig in volleyball is a defensive move that prevents the ball from touching the ground after the attacking team spikes or tips the ball. The defender usually has to get very low to “dig” the ball up. Leading Long Branch High School in digs is Dulce Oliva, senior.
“We have played three set matches. We have lost matches with very close scores,” said Navarro. The Wave lost 25-18 in match one against Freehold Borough and 25-16 in match two on Wednesday. “A few of our matches we were up late. In a nutshell, we just need to find a way to close out matches.”
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