Indian River spikes Royals from unbeaten ranks

IR freshman Ehlers has 27 kills
October 6, 2017

It was like a pendulum of momentum as the Delmarva Christian and Indian River volleyball teams took turns knocking powerhouse spikes and jumping immovable blocking walls. When the match was over, the Indians took a 3-2 victory.

“They played well,” said Indian River coach Jim Barnes. “[Delmarva Christian] were just winning by I’d say a foot. It’s just a couple of plays. I told my girls that we were right there. We just have to stick with it. You have to play every point and hope you come out on top.”

And in the end, the Indians garnered a 21-25, 18-25, 25-12, 25-19, 15-9 victory.

“It was a tale of two matches,” said Royals coach Jim Berger. “At the start of it, we played great defense, and down the stretch Indian River’s defense was impeccable. They kept the ball in play and we got the unforced error bug again.”

Indian River freshman outside hitter Raychel Ehlers led the Indians with 27 kills.

“I think we were a little nervous at first,” said Ehlers. “They were undefeated and so were we, so we didn’t want to lose. We just turned it on in the third set.”

Indians senior setter Mckenzie Johnson assisted on 41 points in the match, while sophomore libero Jessica Amezcua had 17 digs.

“I’ve been coaching in southern Delaware for 14 years now, and that was one of the best games I’ve ever been involved in,” said Berger. “They were two very good teams.”

Senior outside hitter Gabrielle Book led the Royals of Delmarva Christian with 14 kills, while Hannah Picconi knocked down nine. Olivia Berger was credited with 30 assists and libero Siera Jones picked up 23 digs.

“I felt we just got stuck in the moment,” said Royals senior setter Olivia Berger. “Going into this, the thought of us being undefeated just got in our heads and I think that hurt us. We just have to make smart plays.”

Royals senior outside hitter Cam Thompson, who had nine kills and 11 digs in the contest, gave kudos to the Indians for their play.

“Indian River deserved that win,” said Thompson. “But both teams played their hearts out. As a team, we played really well, but IR just stepped it up in the last three games.”

“Our team chemistry couldn’t be better right now,” said Indian River outside hitter Julia Bomhardt, who just came back from an injury.

“It’s pass, set, hit,” said Barnes. “They have been clutch all year, and when it’s been close, they’ve come through at the end. I’m proud of them.”

The Indians are now 8-0.

Delmarva Christian is now 9-1 after defeating Worcester Prep Wednesday, Oct. 4.

Cam Breasure led the Royals over the Mallards with nine kills while Hannah Picconi had seven. Olivia Berger tallied 19 assists, and Gabrielle Book and Siera Jones each had eight digs.

The Royals will welcome Holly Grove Christian Friday, Oct. 6, while the Indians will host Smyrna Tuesday, Oct. 10.