SCARSDALE – Home, sweep home.
While Scarsdale has a spacious, well-maintained court in the main gymnasium of the school, Raiders coach Ann Marie Nee chooses to play in the smaller gym across the hall for home matches.
Part of that is because Nee played her matches there during her playing days at Scarsdale. Nee’s familiarity with the court also helps give her team an advantage over opponents.
“The windows around the top (of the main gym) create a glare, so that when a volleyball is up there, you can’t see it very well and it causes an optical illusion,” Nee said after sweeping Ursuline on Tuesday, 25-20, 25-16, 25-23. “It’s also a little bit more intimate (in this gym).
“This is the volleyball gym, that’s the basketball gym.”
Scarsdale (12-2) didn’t appear to need any advantage Tuesday, dominating the Koalas for the majority of the contest. The sweep also returned the favor to the Koalas, who swept the Raiders for its first loss less than two weeks ago.
The two teams will share the league title for the second consecutive season.
“I felt we were a little step behind,” Koalas coach Gigi Kemp said. “They always play with heart, but (we were) just one step behind a little bit like the first half of the game, then the second half we pick it up.
“I think they wanted it so badly, sometimes people overplay or overthink or overdo.”
The Koalas nearly forced extended play in the final game, rallying after Kemp called a timeout trailing 24-19.
Ursuline (14-3) missed its starting libero, junior Milena Ciaccia, who was nursing a mild concussion sustained Friday. Kemp said she hopes Ciaccia will be back in matches by the postseason, which begins on Oct. 30.
Player of the game: Tatiana Tiangco, Scarsdale: The senior finished with 14 kills, 28 digs and six blocks, the latter two being team-highs.
Stat line: Scarsdale senior Kristine Fink led all players with 16 kills. Fellow senior Courtney Lee added three aces and 23 digs. … Ursuline seniors Francesca Strazzera and Rebecca Caruso each had seven kills. Strazzera also had a team-high 16 digs.
Quotable: “Sometimes you need a loss to put things into perspective,” Kemp said after Ursuline had its seven-match winning streak snapped.