Last updated: September 26. 2013 12:27AM - 1346 Views
Tom Fox For The Times Leader

Lake-Lehman's Danae Sutliff sends the ball over the net against Wyoming Area in a WVC girls volleyball match Wednesday night.
Lake-Lehman's Danae Sutliff sends the ball over the net against Wyoming Area in a WVC girls volleyball match Wednesday night.
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LEHMAN TWP. — A team grows up together on the court for the past three seasons, and as a coach and player, you know what follows.

Lofty expectations. And with expectations sometimes brings pressure to live up and exceed what is set for you.

Right now, all Kevin Koziol wants his Lake-Lehman volleyball team to do is continue to improve and enjoy the moment.

So far, so good.

Lehman fought off a pesky Wyoming Area charge, battling back from deficits in the final two sets en route to a 3-0 victory in Wyoming Valley Conference play Wednesday.

Game scores were 25-19, 25-23 and 25-18.

It was the fifth straight win for Lake-Lehman, which remains two games behind undefeated Holy Redeemer. Wyoming Area, which had won three consecutive coming into the match, fell to 4-4.

“I think we played pretty well, especially in the last 10 points of that third set,” Koziol said. “The girls have kept their heads and just play the game.”

It’s no surprise to see the Black Knights in this spot. The team lost just one senior off last year’s team that qualified for the district 2A playoffs.

Then again, when you have a squad that’s been playing together on the varsity level for so long, it’s just second-nature to know where teammates are going to be, where the pass is going to be set up or where the back-row dig is coming from.

Maria Chinikaylo has been setting teammates for years now. The hitters are comfortable with spots on the court, and playing to their strengths and counter-balancing their teammates’ weaknesses.

“This year especially, we are all working as one unit and are coming together nicely,” senior Kahli Kotulski said. “We are fine with the expectations so far, and we know we have to kill it every time we step on the court because we want to keep it going. This year means the world to us. We’ve been working for this season for a long time now. Last year, we made the playoffs, but we didn’t go as far as we would have liked. This year, we know we can do it and we are going to work our butts off to get there.”

Sometimes, though, you do have the pressure. Koziol won’t deny the lofty goals. Right now, the Black Knights are sitting in the top-half of the WVC. Looking at the district 2A standings, it’s not out of the realm of possibility Lehman (6-2) could reach as high as a No. 2 seed.

“I keep telling the girls to expect excellence, and you achieve that by expecting it,” the head coach said. “We still have some old habits of falling back into sloppiness here or there, or playing down at times. We are trying to use some different tactics to keep going strong.”

Wyoming Area had thoughts of its own.

After struggling with eight attack errors and five service miscues in the opening set, the charge began.

The Warriors held a 22-21 lead in the second set, only to see Danae Sutliff respond with two consecutive kills and a Lehman ace ended a 4-1 run and gave the Black Knights a 25-23 victory.

Wyoming Area also held a brief lead in the third before Kotulski took over. She recorded four of her team-high eight kills in the final 18 points of the set, which allowed Lehman to close on a 12-5 spurt to break open a 13-13 tie.

Hitting woes hurt the Warriors with a total of 24 attack errors in the match.

“I’m happy that we battled,” Wyoming Area first-year head coach Nick Diaco said. “We have girls that don’t quit and will battle until the very end. It was nice to see us come close and hang with Lake-Lehman. We just have to continue to work with the girls to adapt to our style of play.”

* * *

Lake-Lehman 3, Wyoming Area 0

WA `19`23`18

LL `25`25`25

WA: Samantha Acacio 9 kills, 2 aces, 2 blocks; Audrey Hiedacavage 21 assists; Mallory Bohan 7 kills, 5 digs.

LL: Kahli Kotulski 8 kills, 2 aces; Danae Sutliff 6 kills, 1 ace; Maria Chinikaylo 23 assists, 1 kill.

* * *

Crestwood 3, Meyers 0

Taryn Wojnar totaled 28 service points as the Comets went on to win 25-7, 25-10, 25-2.

Emily Sipple contributed with six kills while Olivia Jankowski had 12 assists.

Hazleton Area 3, Meyers 0

Salimah Biggs compiled six digs, two kills, six assists and eight service points to lead Meyers in its loss to Hazleton Area on Tuesday.

Gina Strillacci added six digs, six service points and two aces in the loss.

Hanover Area 3, Coughlin 1

Hanover Area rallied from a loss in the opener to defeat Coughlin.

Raeann Walton had 10 points, five digs and a kill for Hanover Area. Hannah Eck added five points, six digs and four aces. Chyanne Fine had three aces, two digs and seven kills.

Rachel Supinski finished with 20 service points and Carmen Garcia added nine for Coughlin.

Delaware Valley 3, Wyoming Valley West 0

The Spartans lost by scores of 25-7, 25-14, 25-11.

Trudi Casier led the Wyoming Valley West effort with six service points while Gavyn Giza contributed four kills.

* * *

Crestwood 3, Meyers 0



MEY: Unavailable.

CRE: Taryn Wojnar 28 service points, 7 kills, 6 aces; Emily Sipple 9 service points, 8 assists, 6 kills, 3 aces; Olivia Jankowski 12 assists, 7 service points, 2 aces.

Delaware Valley 3, Wyoming Valley West 0

Wyoming Valley West`7`14`11

Delaware Valley`25`25`25

WVW: Trudi Casier 6 service points, 5 aces, 6 digs; Gavyn Giza 4 kills, 4 blocks, 2 aces.

DV: Unavailable.

Hazleton Area 3, Meyers 0

Hazleton Area`25`25`25


HAZ: Unavailable

MEY: Salimah Biggs 6 digs, 2 kills, 6 assists, 8 service points; Gina Strillacci 6 digs, 6 service points, 2 aces.

Hanover Area 3, Coughlin 1


Hanover Area`23`25`25`25

COU: Rachel Supinski 20 service points, 5 aces; Carmen Garcia 9 service points, 7 digs, 1 kill.

HAN: Raeann Walton 10 service points, 5 digs, 1 kill; Hannah Eck 5 service points; 6 digs, 4 aces; Chyanne Fine 3 aces, 2 kills, 7 digs.

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